Bharatiya Janata Party-led government at the Centre on Sunday imposed President’s Rule in Uttarakhand one day before the Governor had asked the Harish Rawat to prove his majority in the assembly.
Sources said the move was taken after Governor K.K. Paul submitted his second report to the Centre.
Uttarakhand Chief Minister Harish Rawat earlier condemned the threat by the Centre to impose President’s rule in the state.
He said the move will be a murder of democracy, adding it is not acceptable in a parliamentary system.
“The Centre is targeting a small state. The BJP is trying to degrade the established institutions in the states,” he was quoted by the news agency ANI.
There has been sharp reactions from politicians, constitutional experts and the members of the civil society.
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal said, “Prez rule imposed one day before trust vote? BJP is anti-democracy. BJP/RSS want dictatorship, want to rule India thro Prez Rule (sic)”
Supreme Court lawyer, Prashant Bhushan said, “President’s rule in Ukhand! Democracy ki Jai! Horse Trading ji Jai! Shaktiman ki Jai! And Bharat Mata?”
Congress’ spokesperson, Sanjay Jha, said, “Destabilize popularly elected governments through brazen horse-trading; when BJP starts losing state elections,this is their pitiable option. I am waiting to hear Arun Jaitley; he is a lawyer & has probably read the SR Bommai case SC verdict of 1994.”
Supreme Court lawyer and Congress leader, Abhishek Singhvi said, “Obviously Modi govt has no confidence re tomorrow’s confidence vote! Else why the double whammy of short circuiting both speaker& floor test.”
Constitution expert, Vivek Thanka, said, “Presidents rule in Uttarakhand without a floor test. I doubt it can face the test of constitutionality !!!”
Meanwhile, the fate of the nine rebel Congress MLAs would be decided today by Uttarakhand Assembly Speaker Govind Singh Kunjwal.
The reported decision to disqualify the nine legislators from the Congress Party, who have revolted against Rawat and joined hands with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), would reduce the effective strength of the 70-member assembly to 61.
The rebel Congress legislators yesterday released a sting video of Chief Minister Rawat and alleged that he is indulging in horse-trading to save his government.
The video purportedly showed him bargaining with rebel party lawmakers to win their support ahead of the floor test on Monday.
Reacting to the video, the BJP demanded President’s Rule in the state, saying Chief Minister Rawat has no right to continue.
A BJP delegation met President Pranab Mukherjee yesterday and expressed apprehension that the Congress government may try to abuse the Speaker’s office to disqualify rebel legislators to win the floor test.
BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya told the media after meeting the President that there was no need for a show of strength in the assembly following the sting and added that a constitutional crisis existed in the state.
This move has come as a major setback to the Congress as Arunachal Pradesh also witnessed a similar situation of President’s rule.