Just a day after President Pranab Mukherjee cleared the recommendation to impose President’s Rule in Arunachal Pradesh, the Supreme Court heard Congress’ plea against the imposition of Central rule in the crisis-hit state.
The five-judge Constitution bench of the SC has immediately demanded the report which led to the imposition of President’s rule in the hill state. The apex court asked the counsel of Arunachal Pradesh’s Governor to furnish the documents. SC also questioned why it was not apprised about the latest developments relating to the matter.
The fresh petition was filed by state Congress chief whip Rajesh Tacho.
The earlier plea filed by former Speaker Nabam Rebia alleged that he was removed from the Speaker’s post by some rebel Congress and BJP MLAs in a makeshift Assembly session held at a community hall in Itanagar on December 16. Rebia, in his plea, also raised questions on the Governor’s power to advance and convene the Assembly session without the aid and advice of the government, especially the CM and his cabinet. Governor had allegedly advanced the session to December 16 from its scheduled date of January 14.
In a dramatic political development last month, 20 rebel MLAs of the ruling Congress party, along with 11 BJP MLAs and 2 independent MLAs removed Speaker Nabam Rebia in a make-shift “Assembly” premises in a community hall in Itanagar.
The Governor had called the Assembly session on December 16 in which Deputy Speaker revoked disqualification of 14 rebel Congress MLAs and removed Rebia from the post of Speaker. The total of 33 MLAs in the 60-member house then elected dissident Congress lawmaker Kalikho Pul as the new Chief Minister of the state.
Various decisions of the Governor and the Deputy Speaker were challenged by Rebia in Gauhati High Court which passed an interim order keeping in abeyance these decisions till February 1.
On Monday afternoon, Home Minister Rajnath Singh had met the President to apprise him on the rationale behind cabinet’s decision to impose Central rule in the hill state.
A day before that, on Sunday, the cabinet meeting chaired by Prime Minister Modi, cited “political instability” to recommended President’s rule in the state.
“The Union Cabinet has recommended the imposition of President’s rule in Arunachal Pradesh for the next six months. The question of BJP forming the government does not arise at all. It is the MLAs who will decide what to do in future,” MoS Home Kiren Rijiju had told PTI after the decision was taken.
(With inputs from PTI)