'Invitation for Govt formation to Sonia illegal'

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New Delhi, Jul 14: The Supreme Court today fixed for final disposal a petition challenging the legality of the action of late former president of India K R Narayanan, who had invited Congress president Sonia Gandhi to explore the possibility of formation of government after the fall of the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government in 1999.

According to petitioner Rshtra Mukti Morcha, the President had acted in violation of the provisions of the constitution of India in inviting Sonia Gandhi to form a government despite the fact that she was not the leader of the opposition at that time but an MP.

Mr Sharad Pawar was the leader of the opposition in the Lok Sabha when the 13-month-old Vajpayee government lost trust vote on the floor of the House by a single vote.

The Indian citizenship of the Congress president was also in doubt and she took the same after 16 years of her marriage to late Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.

The petitioner further alleged that the Union Home Ministry had granted Indian citizenship to Ms Gandhi in a tearing hurry without following the due process of law.

Appearing for RMM, senior counsel B N Lekhi contended before a Bench comprising Chief justice K G Balakrishnan and Justice P Sathasivam that the Centre was not filing its counter deliberately and intentionally.

Additional Solicitor General P P Malhotra, however, sought time to file counter affidavit.

The Supreme Court directed the petition to be listed for final disposal after eight weeks.


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