The Uttarakhand High Court today dismissed the plea of nine rebel Congress MLAs challenging their disqualification by the Speaker. The court told the MLAs that principles of natural justice have not been violated by the Speaker.
The MLAs are now approaching the Supreme Court for an urgent hearing in the case after their plea was turned down by the High Court based in Nainital. The nine MLAs had been barred by the top court from participating in a much-anticipated floor test scheduled for Tuesday in which ex-CM Harish Rawat would be allowed to seek a vote of confidence.
The nine MLAs, who were disqualified by Speaker Govind Singh Kunjwal on March 27, had filed two separate petitions in the high court challenging the Speaker’s action against them. The MLAs had sided with BJP to demand a division of votes on the Appropriation Bill in the state Assembly. With the apex court order, the effective strength of the House will be reduced from 70 to 61 in which any party mustering the support of 31 MLAs will have the majority.