The fate of sixteen Shiv Sena MLAs, who joined rebel leader Eknath Shinde to force the party to sever ties with the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party and re-align with the BJP, hangs in balance as Uddhav Thackeray’s plea remains pending in the Supreme Court.
SC was earlier slated to hear the bunch of pleas on Monday, but it was not listed for hearing in the morning.
Despite the order from the vacation bench that the case would be heard on July 11, the Maharashtra cases were not listed for hearing in the Supreme court causelist released on Sunday or updated early Monday morning. The lawyers for the Uddhav Thackeray faction have said they will mention the matter before the CJI bench at 10:30 am and request an urgent hearing today.
Former Maharashtra CM Uddhav Thackeray and his supporters have filed two petitions in the Supreme Court.
The first petition is the old one where the disqualification of 16 rebel MLAs is to be decided, while the second petition is the one which was filed on Friday. In that petition, Thackeray challenged the Governor’s decision to call rebel MLA Eknath Shinde to form the government on June 30.
The bench was to hear the petitions on trust vote issues, appointment of chief whip in the Assembly by the newly-elected speaker and disqualification pleas pending against 16 rebel Sena MLAs.
With at least four different petitions still pending before the top court, all eyes were on what the Supreme Court would do in this case.
It all started when the then CM of Maharashtra, Uddhav Thackeray, suspected cross-voting in Legislative Council elections and called an urgent meeting of all Shiv Sena MLAs. All MLAs were strictly asked to remain present at the meeting. However, Shiv Sena leader Eknath Shinde was untraceable, along with 11 MLAs.
Shiv Sena removed Shinde from the post of legislature party leader as the news of the rebellion spread.
On arrival, Eknath Shinde claimed he had the support of 40 MLAs, more than the number required to buck the anti-defection law.
Both BJP and Eknath Shinde denied the former’s involvement in the rebellion even as Shiv Sena demanded the disqualification of 16 rebel MLAs. The request was submitted to the Deputy Speaker. In response, two independent MLAs decided to introduce a no-confidence motion against the Deputy Speaker.
The Deputy Speaker then issued notices to 16 rebel MLAs, seeking answers about their absence at a legislative meeting called by Shiv Sena.
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