Solicitor General of India, Tushar Mehta
Solicitor General of India, Tushar Mehta

Karnataka MLAs: No difficulty in Speaker deciding disqualification petitions afresh, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta

Murali Krishnan

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta told the Supreme Court that the new Speaker of Karnataka Legislative Assembly has no difficulty in hearing and deciding disqualification petitions against 17 former Karnataka MLAs afresh.

He made this submission during the hearing of the petitions filed by 17 disqualified MLAs.

“The new Speaker should have no difficulty in hearing aggrieved MLAs and taking a fresh call.”

He also clarified that it is his argument/ suggestion and won’t bind the Speaker.

However, Senior Advocate Rajeev Dhavan who was arguing on behalf of former Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy opposed the same stating that the Solicitor General cannot act as a self-appointed Amicus.

The Karnataka Legislative Assembly had witnessed a tumultuous period a few months back when 17 MLAs of the Congress-JD(S) coalition which was in power tendered their resignation from the House. It had led to allegations of horse-trading by BJP which subsequently came to power after then Chief Minister HD Kumaraswamy failed to prove his majority in the House.

However, the then Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar had disqualified the 17 MLAs who had resigned prompting them to approach the Supreme Court.

With the BJP coming to power, BJP MLA Vishweshar Hegde Kageri is the current Speaker.

Read a full account of today’s hearing here.

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