SC refuses to restrain Rajasthan HC from passing Friday order on rebel Cong MLAs’ plea

CJI SC Home secretary

The Supreme Court on Thursday refused to restrain the Rajasthan High Court from delivering its verdict on rebel Congress MLAs’ petition challenging the disqualification proceedings initiated against them by state Assembly Speaker CP Joshi.

Nineteen rebel Congress MLAs, including sacked Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot, have challenged the validity of Speaker CP Joshi’s decision to issue show-cause notices to them under the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution i.e. the anti-defection law.

“Let the high court deliver the verdict tomorrow,” a Bench headed by Justice Arun Mishra said.

However, the top court made it clear that the high court’s judgment will be subject to the outcome of the proceedings before it.

Noting that there was a large question of the functioning of the democracy, the Bench said it will further hear the matter on July 27.

The top court is seized of Rajasthan Speaker CP Joshi’s petition challenging the state high court’s decision to defer its decision, on rebel Congress MLAs’ petition, to July 24.

The Bench told senior advocate Kapil Sibal, representing the Speaker, that it intended to adjourn his plea as it was a “serious matter” which required a “prolonged hearing”.

It didn’t agree to Sibal’s demand to stay further proceedings in Rajasthan HC until the matter is decided by the Supreme Court.

Sibal contended that no judicial authority could go into whether an MLA will be disqualified for not attending party meetings outside the House.