The Uddhav Thackeray faction failed to get relief from the Supreme Court on Wednesday, with the court refusing to stay the floor test called for by the Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari on June 30 to test the Maha Vikas Aghadi government’s claim of a majority on the House.
“We are not staying the floor test,” a Vacation Bench of Justices Surya Kant and J.B. Pardiwala briefly informed the warring Shiv Sena factions after taking a half-an-hour recess to deliberate in their chambers following a marathon hearing which spanned four hours, starting at 5 p.m.
Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray resignsThe decision follows the Supreme Court allowing the floor test on June 30 as per the Governor’s directions
The court, however, said it would hear on merit the writ petition filed by Thackeray loyalist Sunil Prabhu challenging the process leading to the call for floor test on July 11, along with petitions filed by Sena dissidents led by Eknath Shinde, who has questioned the disqualification proceedings initiated against them.
“Tomorrow’s proceedings (floor test) will be subject to the final outcome of these petitions in court,” the Bench addressed the lawyers.
The court had urgently heard the challenge to the floor test amidst the frenzy of political churnings in Maharashtra. “The urgency that has been created requires us to hear the matter today itself,” Justice Kant submitted.
The decision to allow the floor test came after the Governor and the dissident MLAs held that delaying the trust vote would be the “anti-thesis of democracy” and “give more time for horse-trading in Maharashtra”.
The Thackeray camp argued that the trust vote could not be held when the disqualification proceedings against 16 rebel MLAs, including Shinde, were pending and being examined by the Supreme Court. They said the dissidents were an “artificial majority”.