Supreme Court, a bench headed by Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud on Monday disapproved the delay by Maharashtra assembly Speaker in deciding on the disqualification plea pending against MLAs belonging to chief minister Eknath Shinde's faction.
Speaking for the Bench, CJI Chandrachud remarked, «it appears that nothing has happened since the day of judgment». On May 11, a Constitution Bench had directed the Speaker to decide disqualification proceedings in a «reasonable period».
«The Speaker cannot say that he will hear in due course,» the CJI said.
Speaking for the Bench, he said, «while this court is cognizant to the need of comity with the Speaker, we equally expect deference to the dignity of this court's judgment to be maintained.» SC directed the Speaker to hear the disqualification petitions no later than a week.
Appearing for the Speaker, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta argued that the Speaker was a constitutional functionary. Mehta contended that the question remained whether the Speaker can be directed to submit details of his day-to-day functioning to the Supreme Court.
In response, the CJI said that the Speaker was a «tribunal under the Tenth Schedule. As a Tribunal he is amenable under this court's jurisdiction.
The Speaker has to abide by the dignity of the Supreme Court».
SC questioned what the Speaker had done after the May 11 judgment of the Constitution Bench. It ordered that the Solicitor General, on the next date of hearing, apprise the court the time schedule set by the Speaker for expeditious disposal of the disqualification petitions.
Petitioners counsel, senior advocate Kapil Sibal contended the Speaker was doing a «complete farce».