17/07/2019 10:54 AM IST | Updated 17/07/2019 11:45 AM IST

Karnataka Speaker Free To Decide On Rebel MLAs' Resignations, Says Supreme Court

The court, however, said the 15 MLAs cannot be compelled to participate in proceedings of Assembly till the Speaker decides.

The Supreme Court on Wednesday gave the Karnataka Speaker full liberty to decide on the resignation of the rebel MLAs, NDTV said. There was no time limit imposed on his decision

The Speaker will decide on resignation of the 15 MLAs within an appropriate time frame, the top court said in its interim order.  The court, however, said the 15 MLAs cannot be compelled to participate in proceedings of Assembly till the Speaker decides, the Bar&Bench reported.

“The discretion of the assembly speaker in deciding resignation should not be fettered by direction or observations of the court,” the Supreme Court said. 

The court also directed that the Speaker’s decision on the resignations be placed before it.

The court said it was necessary to maintain constitutional balance.

In response to the verdict, Karnataka assembly Speaker KR Ramesh Kuma said he act in accordance with the Consitution, the court and Lokpal.

Karnataka assembly Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar had on Tuesday told the Supreme Court that he, being a constitutional functionary, cannot be directed to first decide on the resignations of rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs, that too within a particular time frame, PTI reported.

Karnataka chief minister HD Kumaraswamy questioned the jurisdiction of the apex court in entertaining the pleas of 15 rebel MLAs, who were seeking a direction to the Speaker to accept their resignations, and said these lawmakers were “hunting in a pack” to bring down the government.

Meanwhile, BJP leader BS Yeddyurappa said the Congress-JD(S) government would not last because they did not have the numbers.

“Karnataka CM has lost his mandate. When there is no majority, he must resign tomorrow. I welcome SC’s decision, it’s the victory of Constitution and democracy, a moral victory for rebel MLAs. It’s only an interim order, SC will decide powers of Speaker in future,” he said, ANI quoted.

BJP’s Jagadish Shettar BJP also called for Kumaraswamy’s resignation: “There is anarchy in the state because of HD Kumaraswamy, he should resign immediately after this verdict and not wait for the trust vote.”

The Karnataka assembly is slated to decide the confidence motion moved by the Kumaraswamy-led state government on Thursday.