Abhishek Singhvi disputes letter given by Ajit Pawar claiming 54 MLAs’ support

Updated on Nov 26, 2019 02:42 AM IST
What stood out were the submissions by Senior Advocates Maninder Singh and Abhishek Manu Singhvi. Singh was appearing for Ajit Pawar while Singhvi was representing the NCP, which, by Saturday evening had rallied around party patriarch Sharad Pawar, and removed Ajit Pawar as its legislative party leader.
Singhvi said that he wouldn’t put this submission on record but maintained that Ajit Pawar was no longer NCP Legislative Party Leader.(ANI Photo)
Singhvi said that he wouldn’t put this submission on record but maintained that Ajit Pawar was no longer NCP Legislative Party Leader.(ANI Photo)
Hindustan Times, New Delhi | ByMurali Krishnan, New Delhi

Court Room 2 of Supreme Court, where the case over whether the governor did the right thing by calling Devendra Fadnavis of the BJP and Ajit Pawar, who claimed to represent the NCP, to form the government in Maharashtra, witnessed some strong submissions on Monday.

What stood out were the submissions by Senior Advocates Maninder Singh and Abhishek Manu Singhvi. Singh was appearing for Ajit Pawar while Singhvi was representing the NCP, which, by Saturday evening had rallied around party patriarch Sharad Pawar, and removed Ajit Pawar as its legislative party leader.

Maninder Singh began by stating: “I am NCP”.

He maintained that Ajit Pawar was the legislative party leader and in that position he was entitled to take the call he did on behalf of the party -- in this case, to support the BJP.

“As leader of theparty, I am entitled to take a call on these issues.”

Singh also said that the validity of the letter given by Pawar to Fadnavis was not disputed.

However, these arguments were strongly countered by AM Singhvi who argued that the letter from Pawar to Fadnavis containing the signatures of all 54 NCP MLAs was, in reality, a letter electing Pawar as legislative party leader and not a letter expressing support to the BJP.

He went to the extent of alleging that Pawar had committed perjury (wilfully making a misrepresentation under oath to the court).

“This is a fraud on democracy of the worst kind. Does a single NCP MLA say they are ready to join BJP?” Singhvi asked

Mukul Rohatgi, appearing for Fadnavis and Maninder Singh objected to Singhvi’s submissions. The judges also said that they were not interested in going into these issues and would confine themselves to the aspect of floor test.

Singhvi said that he wouldn’t put this submission on record but maintained that Ajit Pawar was no longer NCP Legislative Party Leader.

“It should shock the Court that somebody would get up and say ‘I am NCP’. He has been removed as Legislative Party Leader”, Singhvi said.

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