Saturday , August 19 2017

Sasikala swearing-in likely to be delayed; Governor to seek legal opinion

Sources stated the Governor was of the view that there was no hurry to hold the swearing-in of Ms Sasikala on Tuesday

Sasikala

Chennai: Tamil Nadu in charge Governor Ch. Vidyasagar Rao on Monday sought legal opinion on whether or not he could induct AIADMK general secretary V.K. Sasikala as Chief Minister. He left for Mumbai through flight on Monday night from Delhi.

According to sources close to the Tamil Nadu Raj Bhavan, Mr Vidyasagar Rao who was in Coimbatore on Sunday took a direct flight to Delhi and on Monday met with legal advisors before taking a flight to Mumbai.

This it looks as if will put paid to the plans to get Ms Sasikala sworn in on Tuesday as originally planned. Sources stated the Governor was of the view that there was no hurry to hold the swearing-in of Ms Sasikala on Tuesday as he had not prolonged an invitation based on the AIADMK Legislature Party communication to him that they had elected Ms Sasikala as their leader.

“The Governor while accepting the resignation of Mr O. Panneerselvam had specifically asked him to continue as Chief Minister till alternative preparations are made. This means Mr Panneerselvam and his ministry will continue for some more days before the Governor forms his opinion on the AIADMK Legislature Party resolution,” a source expressed to the source.

Sources stated the Governor wanted to wait till the judgement of the Supreme Court, expected next week, on whether Ms Sasikala, a close aide of the late Chief Minister J. Jayalalithaa, was embarrassed of corruption charges under the Prevention of Corruption Act, in the 21-year-old Rs 66-crore disproportionate assets case.

Supreme Court had found fault in Jayalalithaa’s swearing in

Sources stated that on an earlier occasion, the Supreme Court had found fault with then Governor Fatima Beevi for swearing in Ms Jayalalithaa on May 14, 2001 when she had been barred from contesting in the elections. Jayalalithaa would have needed to get elected within 6 months, which would not have been possible at that time.

A few public interest proceedings were filed in the Supreme Court questioning the validity of Jayalalithaa’s appointment as Chief Minister. Ms Fatima Beevi justified her decision by saying that the majority party in the Assembly had elected Jayalalitha as their leader.

Ms Fatima Beevi submitted her resignation after the Union Cabinet decided to recommend to the President to recall the Governor for having failed to discharge her constitutional obligation.

Later, the Supreme Court overturned Jayalalithaa’s appointment as Chief Minister.

The court ruled: “The Governor cannot, in the exercise of his/her freedom of choice or otherwise, do anything that is conflicting to the Constitution and the laws. Hence, the Governor, having due regard to the Constitution and the laws, must decline to exercise the decision in appointing as Chief Minister a non-member who was not qualified to become a member of the legislature.”

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