Uttarakhand High Court has granted time till 12th of this month to Centre for filing its response on petitions filed by former Chief Minister Harish Rawat.
Mr. Rawat has challenged the imposition of President’s Rule in the state. Centre imposed President’s rule in Uttarakhand after 9 rebel Congress MLAs joined hands with BJP and State Assembly failed to pass Appropriation Bill for spending beyond March 31, 2016
Senior Supreme Court lawyer and Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi, while arguing on behalf of the deposed Chief Minister Harish Rawat, cited the SR Bommai and Rameshwar Prasad cases against the arbitrary use of Article 356 to impose President’s rule in Uttarakhand. He argued that it was for the first time that President’s rule was imposed to circumvent the Governor’s order for a floor test on March 28 and second to thwart the Speaker’s order to disqualify nine rebel Congress legislators. He said the plea of Appropriation Bill having not passed was an excuse to impose President’s rule in the state.
The double Bench had earlier stayed the floor test ordered by the single Bench of Justice UC Dhyani for March 31 on a petition filed by the Union government. The Centre had prayed that as President’s rule was imposed in the state on March 27, there was no question of a floor test.