New Delhi, July 13: The Supreme Court of India on Wednesday, July 13, restored the Nabam Tuki led Congress government in Arunachal Pradesh. A Five Judge Bench in its ruling said that all steps taken by the Arunachal Legislative Assembly after December 15 are quashed.
The court said that the action of the governor to dismiss the Tuki led government was illegal. The government led by Tuki was dismissed after 21 MLAs had rebeleld against the Chief Minister. This led to the Governor, J P Rajkhowa suggesting the dismissal of the government. The action today has been held illegal by the Supreme Court.
As a result of this verdict the present government headed by Kalikho Pul will have to step down and make way for a government led by Tuki. The SC in its verdict also struck down the removal of Nabam Rebia as the Speaker. The Bench observed that his position as Speaker would be restored.
Further the judges also said that the decision taken by the governor was quashed. It observed that the decision of the Governor taken last year was in violation of both Articles 163 and 175 of the Indian Constitution. The Bench also said that the governor had no powers to summon an assembly without prior consent of the council of ministers headed by the Chief Minister.
A crisis had broken out on December 16 when 21 rebel Congress MLAs joined hands with 11 BJP members and two Independents to impeach speaker Nabam Rebia. This led to major infighting within the Congress. 21 out of the 47 MLAs had broken away from the Congress which led to calls for a floor test. Allegations of Tuki trying to delay an assembly session too were made.
The governor then called for called for rescheduling the session and directed the deputy speaker to take up a motion seeking the removal of the speaker. The matter then went up to the Gauhati High Court which kept the speaker's decision in abeyance. This was challenged before the Supreme Court.
The leader of the dissident faction, Kalikho Pul, was sworn in as chief minister on 19 February, with the support of the 20 Congress rebels and 11 legislators of the BJP.