Supreme Court questions Governor: Was advancing the Sixth Session of State’s Assembly backed by Constitutional Law or Mere Whim?

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New Delhi; Order issued by J. P. Rajkhowa, the Governor of Arunachal Pradesh, for advancing the assembly session without consulting the Chief Minister, Nabam Tuki, is questioned by the bench of honourable Supreme Court.

The said action by the Apex court was preferred on this Wednesday i.e. 10th day of this February. And it is actually, the Apex court has questioned the use of Constitutional discretion by the Governor of Arunachal Pradesh, for advancing the sixth session of Assembly of Arunachal Pradesh by over a month. Court questioned it as whether the said auction is backed by sound constitutional principle or based on a mere whim.

From the scheduled date of session i.e. from 14th of January, 2016 to 16th day of December, 2015, the said advancing of the date was done under Article 174 (1) of the Constitution, in order to remove speaker, Nebam Rebia found triggering the entire political crisis leading to the imposition of President’s Rule on 26th January, 2016.

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Thus, the Five- Judges Bench of Honourable Supreme, headed by Justice J.S. Khehar and comprising of Justice Dipak Mishra, Justice Madan B. Lokur, Justice P. C. Ghose and Justice N.V. Ramana, asked the senior advocate, T. R. Andhyarujina who appeared for Governor, that what was the constitutional principle here?, Does the discretionary powers covering the advancing of the Assembly session?.

Moreover, the bench also, after referring to the earlier settled judgements, stated that the Constitutional discretion can only be used if it is based on and only on a constitutional principle. It was also seen that the Governor invoked Article 174 (1) of the Constitution of India, even without calling a floor test and as such he had ordered advancing for facilitating the House to expeditiously considering the resolutions for removal of Speaker.

Also, it was made clear by Justice Misra that, the Governor is the defender of Constitution and also he is the protector of the principles of the Constitution. Moreover, SC also questioned that whether Governor seen any urgency for removing the speaker?

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Adv. Faim Khalilkhan Pathan