The petitioners challenging Haryana government’s order to lower the retirement age have argued before the Punjab and Haryana high court that the current strength of council of ministers in the state was ‘insufficient’ to take any decision.
On Thursday, the petitioners’ counsel Rajiv Atma Ram submitted an affidavit before the court that the number of ministers, including the chief minister in a state, cannot be less than twelve as per the 91st amendment of the Constitution Act, 2003.
Ram submitted that according to the provisions of Article 164 of the constitution, the 10 council of ministers in Haryana were insufficient to take a decision.
He further argued that the council’s decision of November 25 and the subsequent instructions were ‘illegal’.
The counsel for the state sought time from the court to make submissions, and the bench of Tejinder Singh Dhindhsa adjourned the hearing for Tuesday.
The Haryana government on November 25 had reversed the Bhupinder Singh Hooda-led government’s decision in August 2014 to increase the retirement age from 58 to 60 years. The decision was challenged in the high court by Baljit Kaur, under secretary in Haryana’s environment department, and seventy others who sought to quash the decision.