Big breather for Palaniswami government: Madras High Court delivers split verdict on disqualification case of MLAs

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In a big relief for Edappadi Palaniswami-led government in Tamil Nadu, the Madras High Court today delivered a split verdict, with a larger bench expected to take up the case in coming months.

Chief Justice of Madras High Court, Justice Indra Banerjee upheld the verdict of the speaker, whereas the other judge deferred the case. The case was being heard by a two-judge bench. The case will now be taken up by a third judge.

what does the verdict mean
1. No danger to EPS government
2. No immediate by-polls
3. Renewed anxiety for TTV CAMP
4. Interim relief for the current government

On 18 September, 2017, assembly speaker P Dhanapal disqualified the 18 AIADMK MLAs on the grounds of Anti-Defection Act and a gazette notification was issued declaring vacancies to their seats. The disqualification of MLAs has brought the Assembly’s strength to 215, thereby reducing the total number of MLAs required for majority to 108.

The 18 MLAs are now supporting ousted AIADMK Deputy General Secretary TTV Dinakaran who is the RK Nagar MLA and also the chief of the newly formed Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam. The disqualified MLAs had called on Tamil Nadu Governor expressing lack of confidence in the leadership of Palaniswami and seeking a change of guard.

The ruling AIADMK has a strength of 116 MLAs exluding the Speaker but including S Karunaas (Mukkulathor Pulipadai), M Thamimun Ansari (Manithaneya Jananayaga Katchi) and U Thaniyarasu (Tamil Nadu Kongu Ilaignar Peravai), who had won on the ruling party’s two leaves symbol in 2016 polls.

While 18 MLAs owing allegiance to Dhinakaran were disqualified, the DMK has 89 MLAs, its allies Congress 8 and the IUML one in the 234 member strong House.
Dhinakaran got elected from RK Nagar last year and he is the lone independent member of the House.

Source: Economic Times