Published: Sat, September 16, 2017
World | By Carl Welch

No floor test in TN Assembly till Sept 20: HC

No floor test in TN Assembly till Sept 20: HC

Justice M Duraiswamy gave the directive while passing interim orders on petitions filed by DMK working president M K Stalin and others seeking a direction to Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao to call for a floor test under the supervision of an independent observer appointed by the court.

While passing orders, Justice M Duraisamy had observed that the court does not wish to interfere with the privileges of the Speaker and that it its the Speaker's discretion to disqualify the MLAs or not. Though the Speaker had asked the rebel MLAs to submit their replies by Thursday, they had failed to do so, according to sources in the Legislative Assembly.

Citing pending disqualification proceedings against 19 MLAs loyal to Dhinkaran after their rebellion against Chief Minister K Palaniswami, the petitioners submitted that they apprehended that the Speaker might disqualify the legislators. There are reports that the Palaniswamy Government would pre-empt the Opposition move to topple the Government by getting the 19 AIADMK MLAs owing allegiance to Sasikala and Dinakaran disqualified. It claimed that such a move would favour the ruling group under Chief Minister E Palaniswami as the number of MLAs needed to prove his government's majority would come down.

"I have 21 MLAs with me and these are the MLAs who did not attend Tuesday's meeting", Dinakaran said.

"The ruling party has the support of only 114 legislators", DMK leader M.K. Stalin has said.

"I can go to any extent to save the party", he warned. Senior ministers say that the hidden agenda of TTV-DMK combine would not succeed and the government would embark on a mission to gain strength by way of numbers.

The DMK and the Dinakaran faction fear that the Speaker would act against the 19 lawmakers so that the government wins the floor test.

Vijila Sathyananth, of the Dhinakaran faction, told the media in Chennai that the faction would soon hold a general council meet of the party after the consent of their general secretary - VK Sasikala. "However, if a challenge emerged for AIADMK government, all of those, who won on AIADMK's two leaves symbol, would support the government under Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palaniswami", he said.

Dhinakaran had earlier dismissed the September 12 General Council as a "public meeting", saying the court could have the final say on the matter.

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