President's Rule in Arunachal Pradesh: Who has upper hand in Supreme Court

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New Delhi, Jan 27: The arguments before the Supreme Court of India on the imposition of President's rule in Arunachal Pradesh will be interesting. The decision taken by the cabinet was consented by the President of India.

The Supreme Court would today hear a petition challenging the imposition of President's Rule filed by a Congress leader who has alleged that the decision was flawed.

Supreme Court

There will be various points of law and judgments which will come into the picture when the Supreme Court hears the matter today. Has the union cabinet acted in accordance with the provisions of the Indian Constitution or not is what the Supreme Court will decide.

Article 356 or 174:

Those challenging the decision to impose President's Rule would tell the Supreme Court that the Union Cabinet has abused its powers under Article 356. President's rule" refers to the imposition of Article 356 of the Constitution of India on a State whose constitutional machinery has failed. In the event that a State government is not able to function as per the Constitution, the State comes under the direct control of the central government; in other words, it is "under President's rule".

However, this power had been misused in the past and the Supreme Court in the S R Bommai case had stated that that courts can question the reasons leading up to the imposition of President's Rule. The point was reiterated in yet another verdict of the Supreme Court which had held that the report of the Governor cannot be considered as the Gospel truth.

The Union Cabinet will, however, argue that there has been no misuse of Article 356. First and foremost the Governor of the state had recommended imposition of President's rule only after Chief Minister Nabam Tuki lost majority after 21 Congress MLAs revolted against him.

The Union Government will also rely on the violation to Article 174 which states that a constitutional machinery has failed as the state assembly has not met in 6 months.

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