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SC directs Maha Speaker to decide defection pleas in Shiv Sena split by Dec 31


Petitions are pending before Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Rahul Narwekar since last year
Uddhav Thackeray has filed petitions to disqualify 56 rebel MLAs including CM Eknath Shinde
The top court also orders to conclude NCP’s defection petitions by January 31, 2024

Sanjeev Prakash Upadhyay @ EW News

New Delhi : The Supreme Court has given a severe blow to the fate of Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and his government by setting deadline to decide on disqualification issue. The Apex Court on Monday directed Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Rahul Narwekar decide on petitions seeking disqualification of rebel MLAs filed by former Chief Minsiter Uddhav Thackeray by December 31. The Maharashtra Speaker has also been asked decide on disqualification petitions initiated by Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar by January 31.
Earlier this month, the Supreme Court had asked the Speaker to decide on disqualification petitions in a realistic timeframe. However, Maharashtra Assembly Secretary asked for more time till February 29 to decide on the disqualification of 56 MLAs.
The petitions are pending since last year when Eknath Shinde and other Shiv Sena MLAs loyal to him ditched the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government and joined the BJP to form government in Maharashtra.
Shiv Sena (Uddhav Thackeray faction) had sought the disqualification of Shinde and his loyalists in petitions filed before the Speaker. Thackeray moved the Supreme Court against the Speaker’s decision to issue a schedule for the hearing of the disqualification proceedings against rebel lawmakers who switched sides during the Shiv Sena’s split last year.
Hearing the plea filed by Uddhav Thackeray faction, a bench headed by Chief Justice DY Chandrachud had on May 11 asked the Speaker to decide on disqualification of Shinde and his loyalists in a reasonable time frame. However, a decision was not taken by Speaker Narwekar.

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