Hyderabad: A crucial Constitutional question has arisen before Governor N.D. Tiwari on whether members of Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy’s Cabinet will continue to remain Ministers after his death.
Mr. Tiwari referred the issue to the government for its opinion through a letter to Chief Secretary P. Ramakanth Reddy, soon after K. Rosaiah was sworn in Chief Minister in place of Dr. Reddy on September 3.
The State government has prepared a letter for submission to Mr. Tiwari after consultations with Advocate-General D.V. Sitarama Murthy.
It is understood that Mr. Murthy has given a detailed opinion in the form of a report with several annexures, all of them running into nearly 40 pages.
At the time of his swearing-in as Chief Minister, Mr. Rosaiah handed over a letter to the Governor suggesting that all 35 members of the Council of Ministers constituted earlier be allowed to continue in the position.
Some legal quarters believe that Mr. Rosaiah’s request had no legal basis and that those in YSR’s Cabinet will have to take oath as a Constitutional obligation. Citing Article 164 of the Constitution in dealing with the issue, they say Ministers are administered the oath of office on the advice of the Chief Minister, and once the Chief Minister resigns or dies in office, his advice will no longer be binding.
The Chief Secretary told The Hindu that the government would examine legal and Constitutional angles before conveying its opinion to the Governor.