New Delhi: The Supreme Court today sought
a response from Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyuruppa and
State Assembly Speaker on an appeal filed by four of the 11
disqualified Karnataka Bharatiya Janata Party MLAs against the
High Court order upholding the Speaker`s decision.
A Bench of Justices Altams Kabir and Cyriac Joseph,
while seeking the response by December 7, posted the matter
for further hearing to Decembember 9.
The Bench passed the direction after senior counsel
Rohinton Nariman raised the issue the during the mention time.
In their special leave petition, the MLAs Gopala
Krishana Belur, Shivanagaouda Naik, Shanker Linge Gowda and
Bellubbi said their disqualification raised substantial
questions of constitutional and administrative law involving
an interpretation of the provisions of the Tenth Schedule and
the Rules made under para 8 thereof for giving effect to it.
They submitted that having regard to the categorical
statement they had made in their replies to the show-cause
issued by the Speaker that they had no intention at all of
leaving BJP or membership of its legislature party and that
their letter to the Governor was aimed at "cleansing the image
of the party by getting rid of Yeddyurappa as Chief Minister,"
"is the Speaker justified in disqualifying them on the ground
that they had voluntarily given up membership of the BJP".
According to the petition, democratic dissent, without
any intention of leaving the party but in the hope of saving
its image and reputation by getting rid of a "corrupt" Chief
Minister cannot be regarded as voluntarily giving up party
membership as such.
It was submitted that they were disqualified before
the voting actually took place in the assembly apprehending
that they would vote against the Chief Minister on the
specious ground that they had voluntarily given up BJP
On October 29, a third judge in the Karnataka High
Court upheld the disqualification of 11 rebel BJP MLAs,
concurring with the decision of the chief justice.