A bench of the High Court of Madras today (22 March) upheld the nomination of three Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) members to the Puducherry Legislative Assembly by Lieutenant Governor (LG) Kiran Bedi, reports The Times of India.
The three members of the legislative assembly (MLAs) were nominated eight months ago by Bedi which sparked off a controversy with Chief Minister V Narayanasamy claiming that it was a constitutional crisis as the recommendation was made against his advice. Congress MLA K Lakshminarayanan claimed that the nomination was ‘void’ and in contravention to constitutional norms and was made by an “incompetent authority” through the “backdoor”.
The three nominees – V Saminathan, K G Shankar, and S Selvaganapathi – were barred from entering the assembly and participating in legislative proceedings since the speaker refused to swear them in or administer the oath of office to them.
The bench – comprising of Chief Justice Indira Bannerjee and M Sundar – delivered two separate verdicts on the matter stating that the nomination of the three was valid and that the assembly secretary’s letter barring them from entering the house was also invalid.
According to the Union Territories Act of 1963, the Centre can nominate not more than three members who are not in government service to the Puducherry Assembly.
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