New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Supreme Court on Tuesday directed that the floor test for the Maharashtra government led by Devendra Fadnavis, whose swearing-in has been challenged by Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress combine, be held on Wednesday, November 27.
A bench of justices N V Ramana, Ashok Bhushan and Sanjiv Khanna ordered that the trust vote be held tomorrow before 5 pm and the proceedings will be telecast live.
The top court said that the senior-most MLA of the House to be nominated as the Protem Speaker to conduct the floor test through open secret ballot, as reported by Bar and Bench.
Kapil Sibal, appearing for Shiv Sena-NCP-Congress alliance, also mentioned before the Supreme Court bench about the application to stop Devendra Fadnavis from taking policy decisions. However, the bench didn't comment on the matter.
The Supreme Court noted that though a month has passed since declaration of election results, MLAs have not been administered oath. It said interim order for conducting floor test to avoid horse-trading and other corrupt practices for gaining majority.
The court accepted the joint petition by Sena-NCP-Congress combine which has challeneged the swearing-in of Devendra Fadnavis and NCP's Ajit Pawar and chief minister and deputy CM in a secretive oath ceremony on Saturday morning.
The combine was pressing for the floor test on Monday itself, which was opposed by Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, who was representing Fadnavis.
The Centre submitted the letters of the Governor and Fadnavis as asked on Sunday by the bench and argued before the top court that Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari had invited Devendra Fadnavis to form government based on a letter showing the support of 170 MLAs, including all 54 of the NCP of Ajit Pawar.
Ajit Pawar told the top court that he is from the real Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and has been authorised by 54 of the party's MLAs to take a decision on their behalf on government formation in the state, a claim vehemently denied by NCP chief Sharar Pawar.
Senior Congress leader Prithviraj Chavan expressed satisfaction over the SC order and said the Shiv Sena, Congress and the NCP have a majority in the House.
"Sena, Cong, NCP are satisfied with the Supreme Court order of a floor test in the Maharashtra assembly... The Constitution has been respected on Constitution Day.
"We are confident that we have a majority in the Maharashtra Assembly. The reality of BJP's claim will be exposed tomorrow," he said.
The NCP said only truth will prevail and that it was "end of the BJP's game". "Satyamev Jayate BJP ka khel khatm" (truth alone shall win, end of the BJP's game), NCP's chief spokesperson Nawab Malik tweeted after the apex court gave its ruling.
Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut said: "Truth has won. The court has given 30 hours, we can prove majority in 30 minutes."
On Monday, the 'Maha Vikas Aghadi' paraded 162 MLAs in a show of strength at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Mumbai. At the event, the MLAs took oath to not fall prey to any inducements by the BJP. The Maharashtra Legislative Assembly has the strength of 288 MLAs where the halfway mark is 145.
Posted By: Abhinav Gupta