Maharashtra Speaker election: Thackeray-Governor feud intensifies
Thackeray had written to him asking for approval of the amended Speaker election business rule. But Koshyari called the amendment from secret ballot to voice vote unconstitutional.
MUMBAI: The fight between Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari is intensifying. The Governor wrote to Thackeray on Tuesday saying he was “pained and dismayed” over the “intemperate tone and threatening tenor” of a note sent to him by the state government over the election of Assembly Speaker.
The Governor said it denigrated the high office he held. Thackeray had written to him asking for approval of the amended Speaker election business rule. But Koshyari called the amendment from secret ballot to voice vote unconstitutional.
Thackeray had issued a strongly-worded letter saying that making law and proposing amendments are the rights and prerogative of the state Assembly. He also said the Governor should not interfere in the works of the state Assembly.
Koshiyari wrote he had taken oath to protect and defend the Constitution, while the Maha Vikas Aghadi’s proposal for holding the Speaker’s election seemed to be unconstitutional and illegal. The Governor said the government had cited Article 208 of the Constitution, which specifies that a House of the state legislature may make rules for regulating its conduct “subject to the provisions of this Constitution”.
Koshiyari also asked why it had taken the MVA government 11 months to start the process of choosing a Speaker and said that the impact of the “drastic” amendment needed to be examined. As per Maharashtra Assembly Rules, under Section 6 (3), elections should be held to the post of the Speaker if more than one member has been nominated by ballot.
The Governor said he could not be pressured to give consent to a process “which prima facie appears to be unconstitutional and illegal”.
Meanwhile, the Congress on Wednesday demanded that the Centre recall Governor Koshyari accusing him of obstructing the functioning of the MVA government in the state.
Maharashtra Congress working president Naseem Khan said Koshyari, despite holding a constitutional post, was behaving like a political party leader.
"Obstructions are being brought in the functioning of the MVA government through Raj Bhavan. The governor should be recalled," he said, adding that the governor had deliberately obstructed the election of the Assembly speaker during the winter session which ended on Tuesday.
The governor has not yet approved the 12 names to the Legislative Council through his quota even a year after the cabinet recommendation, Khan said.
(With PTI Inputs)