Congress to file review petition in SC

Consultations being held on issue of voting rights of nominated legislators, says Narayanasamy

Former Chief Minister V. Narayanasamy on Tuesday said the Congress will file a review petition in the Supreme Court on the issue of voting rights of nominated legislators.

Talking to The Hindu, the senior Congress leader said consultations were being held with the party high command and legal experts on the issue.

Voting rights

The Supreme Court, while dismissing a petition challenging the High Court order on the rights of the Centre to appoint three nominated legislators, had only stated about the rights of nominated MLAs to vote during a “no-confidence motion and passing of a budget,” the former Chief Minister said.

“I moved a confidence motion in the Assembly on Monday and the Speaker was not able to give a clear answer as to whether the three nominated legislators have the right to vote. We want to bring to a logical conclusion the whole issue and hence decided to approach the Supreme Court as they [BJP] could use the nominated legislators for their political gains in the future also,” Mr. Narayanasamy said.

The former Chief Minister said the issue was concerning the rights of a democratically-elected government in the Union Territory.

“The toppling of the government was unconstitutional and illegal. A democratically elected government was made a minority using unethical means and through nominated legislators,” he said.

Member of Parliament V. Vaithilingam told The Hindu that Speaker V.P. Sivakolandhu had violated parliamentary procedures by declaring in the House that a government had lost majority without putting the confidence motion to vote.

Mr. Vaithilingam, a former Speaker himself, said the Government Whip immediately after the Chief Minister’s address on the motion of confidence sought a clarification from Mr. Sivakolandhu on the voting rights of nominated legislators.

He did not clarify and so the ruling party members had staged a walkout, Mr. Vaithilingam added.

‘Procedures violated’

“The Speaker should have listened to the Opposition and then called the ruling party members to the house. After hearing both views, he should have given a ruling and put the confidence motion to vote. The motion was never put to vote,” Mr. Vaithilingam said.

Parliamentary procedures had been violated on the issue of confidence motion, he added.

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