Karnataka crisis: 14 disqualified MLAs move Supreme Court

All the 14 disqualified Congress and Janata Dal (Secular) MLAs in Karnataka on Thursday moved the Supreme Court, challenging their disqualification as legislators from the state assembly. The disqualified MLAs have sought quashing of the July 25 order of disqualification by KR Ramesh Kumar, who resigned on Monday as Speaker of the House.

While three Karnataka MLAs – Ramesh Jarkiholi, Mahesh Kumatalli and Shankar – who rebelled against the former Congress-JD(S) government, were expelled on July 25, the rest – Pratap Gowda Patil, BC Patil, Shivram Hebbar, S T Somashekar, Byrati Basavaraj, Anand Singh, Roshan Baig, Munirathna, K Sudhakar and MTB Nagaraj and Shrimant Patil – were disqualified July 28.

The MLAs moved the Supreme Court against their disqualification as MLAs two days after Congress expelled the 14 rebel MLAs from Karnataka who were responsible for bringing down the party’s coalition government in the state. All the MLAs, who resigned from the state legislature, had abstained from voting that led to the defeat of the Congress-JD(S) government in the trust vote.

The disqualified MLAs have alleged that the decision taken by Ramesh Kumar before his resignation as the Speaker was wholly illegal, arbitrary and mala fide exercise of his power. They have also questioned that the former Speaker’s decision to reject their resignations, terming them as “not voluntary and not genuine”.

The disqualified MLAs’ plea in the Supreme Court “(i) calls for the records of the proceedings before the Speaker pertaining to the resignation and disqualification proceedings against the petitioners, (ii) issue an appropriate writ, order or direction in nature of certiorari to quash and set aside the order dated July 28 passed by the respondent no. 1 rejecting the resignations tendered by the petitioners and (iii) issue an appropriate writ, order or direction in nature of certiorari to quash and set aside the order dated July 28 passed by the respondent no. 1 disqualifying the petitioners from the 15th Karnataka assembly.”

(With inputs from Aneesha Mathur)

Source – India Today