Following the Supreme Court’s commentary that the choice to droop 12 BJP MLAs from the Maharashtra Assembly for one yr is prima facie unconstitutional as there’s a constitutional bar to it working past six months, the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) authorities is prone to tread cautiously on this difficulty.
On 11 January, whereas listening to the petition of 12 BJP legislators difficult their suspension for 1 yr from the state Assembly, the apex courtroom stated that whereas the House has the ability to droop a member, it can’t be for greater than 59 days and identified that below Article 190(4) of the Constitution, if a member of a House is absent from all conferences with out its permission for a interval of 60 days, the House might declare the seat vacant. Terming the move towards the MLAs as “worse than expulsion”, it stated that every constituency has an equal quantity of proper to be represented within the House.
During the Maharashtra Assembly’s monsoon session final yr, 12 BJP MLAs have been suspended for one yr for allegedly misbehaving with the presiding officer within the Assembly Speaker’s chamber. The suspended MLAs embrace Ashish Shelar, Sanjay Kute, Atul Bhatkhalkar, Girish Mahajan, Jaikumar Rawal, Yogesh Sagar, Parag Alvani, Harish Pimple, Ram Satpute, Narayan Kuche, Bunty Bhangadia and Abhimanyu Pawar.
One day earlier than the listening to of the case within the Supreme Court, 6 of the 12 suspended MLAs appeared earlier than Assembly Deputy Speaker Narhari Zhirwal for a listening to on their suspension, after they have been requested to return and document their statements earlier than the Deputy Speaker.
Sources within the Maharashtra authorities stated that the apex courtroom’s remarks have “certainly added some pressure” on the federal government over the difficulty. “The state Legislature Assembly has exercised its power with regard to the behaviour of some of its legislators. The Supreme Court’s remarks have certainly added some pressure on the government but a call will be taken considering all aspects of the issue,” stated a authorities supply.
A senior minister raised questions over Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari not approving the 12 names really useful by the Uddhav Thackeray Cabinet, in November 2020, to the state Legislative Council by way of the Governor’s quota. “It has been more than a year that the Governor has not approved any names despite the recommendation of the state Cabinet. The Governor is supposed to act on the advice of the state Cabinet but the names of 12 MLCs have not been approved. But, nobody is calling it unconstitutional,” stated the minister.
There are a variety of situations the place members of the Maharashtra Assembly or Legislative Council have been suspended for six months or extra on varied grounds over the past a number of years.
In March 2017, Prashant Paricharak, a BJP-backed impartial member of the Legislative Council (MLC), was suspended for his sure objectionable remarks for 18 months, though his suspension was revoked in February 2018. However, following the Shiv Sena members’ protest and demand for his dismissal, Paricharak’s entry into the House was “restricted” until June 2019.
On 25 July 2000, 12 Sena MLAs have been suspended — 6 members for 1 yr and one other 6 for six months — for creating ruckus within the House and their “misbehaviour” after the then Congress-NCP authorities determined to arrest the Sena founder, Balasaheb Thackeray, for allegedly inciting communal hatred within the instances pertaining to the 1993 Mumbai riots. Two days later, 2 Sena MLAs have been suspended for 1 yr on comparable floor. Subsequently, the 1-year suspension of 8 Sena legislators was diminished to 6 months.
In June 2009, three BJP and Sena MLAs have been suspended for three years for his or her “misbehaviour” within the House. However, their suspension was withdrawn in November 2009.
In November 2009, Four MNS MLAs have been suspended for Four years for his or her “inappropriate” behaviour within the House, however it was withdrawn in July 2010.
On the difficulty of the present suspension of 12 MLAs, Dr Anant Kalse, former principal secretary of the Maharashtra Legislature Secretariat, stated, “The Supreme Court has given its observation considering all aspects, and its view of depriving the members of representing the constituencies is right. But, the Constitution has given powers to the House under Article 194 for suspension of members for their behaviour unbecoming of the House under the penal jurisdiction of the House.”