Madras high court to pronounce verdict on TN MLAs’ disqualification case
Speaker P Dhanapal had disqualified the MLAs for “voluntarily giving up their memberships” of AIADMK after they had withdrawn support to the E Palaniswami governmentUpdated: Oct 25, 2018 10:46 IST
The Madras High Court will on Thursday pronounce its verdict in the case concerning the disqualification of 18 dissident AIADMK MLAs of Tamil Nadu assembly who owe allegiance to TTV Dhinakaran.
Speaker P Dhanapal had disqualified the MLAs for “voluntarily giving up their memberships” of AIADMK after they had withdrawn support to the E Palaniswami government and Dhinakaran had formed a separate party Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK).
This had come following the ouster of Dhinakaran and his aunt Sasikala from AIADMK by the reunited forces of Palaniswami and O Panneerselvam after the death of the former chief minister J Jayalalithaa.
The legislators had challenged the disqualification in the high court.
Justice M Sathyanarayanan is the third judge to hear the matter after a split verdict was delivered by a division bench earlier on June 14.
While that ruling meant status quo for the Palaniswami government, some of the disqualified MLAs approached the Supreme Court, seeking transfer of their petition challenging the ruling from the Madras High Court to the apex court, which ruled that justice Sathyanarayanan would hear the matter.
After hearing both sides for about 12 days, justice Sathyanarayanan had reserved his order on August 31.
In the meantime, the 18 MLAs have been shifted to a resort in Tirunelveli district fearing poaching by the ruling faction.
Chief minister Palaniswami cancelled all his morning programmes and held a meeting with law minister C Ve Shanmugam and other senior ministers over the case.
The verdict is set to have a bearing on the tenure of Palaniswami-led government. If the disqualification is upheld, the chief minister will have majority support and Tamil Nadu will have bye-elections to the 18 seats.
If the disqualification is set aside, Palaniswami will find it tough to prove his majority in the House.
Over a hundred CRPF men were deployed outside the Madras high court premises.