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Supreme Court Warns Maharashtra Speaker In Sena Case: 'Can't Drag On Indefinitely'

“We expect deference and dignity to the directions issued by the Supreme Court,” the bench said and after announced that it would consider the plea filed by the Shiv Sena (UBT) faction, which is seeking the disqualification of Shinde and other Shiv Sena MLAs who support him.

Shiv Sena (UBT) Uddhav Thackeray
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On Monday, the Supreme Court instructed the Maharashtra assembly speaker to provide a clear timeframe within one week for resolving the disqualification petitions filed against Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Shiv Sena MLAs who allied with the BJP to establish a new government in June 2022. A panel consisting of Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud and justices J B Pardiwala and Manoj Misra referenced the Supreme Court's May 11 ruling regarding the Maharashtra political crisis, which directed the speaker to promptly decide on the disqualification petitions.

The bench emphasized the speaker's obligation to uphold the Supreme Court's dignity and adhere to its ruling. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing the speaker, was asked to communicate the specific time frame established by the House chair for addressing the disqualification petitions.

“We expect deference and dignity to the directions issued by the Supreme Court,” the bench said and after announced that it would consider the plea filed by the Shiv Sena (UBT) faction, which is seeking the disqualification of Shinde and other Shiv Sena MLAs who support him.

The bench stated that the speaker functions as a "tribunal under the tenth schedule of the Constitution" and, being a tribunal, is subject to the court's jurisdiction. Furthermore, the bench pointed out that there has been no progress on the pending disqualification petitions following the May 11 judgment.

“We now direct that the procedural directions shall be issued by the speaker within a week setting out a timeline to complete the proceedings. The solicitor general shall inform the court about the timeline being set for disposing of the proceedings,” the bench said.

In July, the Uddhav Thackeray faction approached the Supreme Court, requesting that the state assembly speaker be instructed to promptly resolve the disqualification petitions within a specified timeframe. The petition, filed by Shiv Sena (Uddhav Balasaheb Thackeray) MLA Sunil Prabhu, who had originally submitted the disqualification petitions against Shinde and other MLAs in 2022 while serving as the chief whip of the united Shiv Sena, claimed that Speaker Rahul Narwekar is intentionally prolonging the adjudication process, despite the Supreme Court's ruling on the matter.

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