As Yeddy faces legal test, Bommai verdict, Sarkaria Commission report under scrutiny

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B S Yeddyurappa faces a crucial test in the Supreme Court today. The court during a midnight marathon hearing gave the Attorney General 48 hours to produce the two letters written by Yeddyurappa to the Governor.

Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa

The AG, K K Venugopal would submit the two letters to the Bench led by Justice A K Sikri at 10.30 am on Friday. The court would vet the contents of the letters to check whether the Governor made an informed choice.

The court would also scrutinise why the Governor gave Yeddyurappa 15 days time to form the government. Appearing for the Congress-JD(S) combine, Abhishek Manu Singvi asked why Yeddyurappa was given 15 days time when he had asked only for 7. This ample time given could lead to horse trading, he also said.

The Sarakaria precedent:

There are various scenarios that could emerge today at the Supreme Court. The precedent that could be followed is the one laid down in the S R Bommai judgment where the single largest party must be given the first choice to form the government. As per the verdict the party invited to form the government would have to prove its majority on the floor of the House.

The court may decrease the time given by the Governor and ask Yeddyurappa to prove his majority sooner. The BJP currently has 104 members while the Congress-JD(S) have 116, way past the the half way of 112 in the 222 member House.

The other precedent that the court would take into consideration is the one laid down by the Sarkaria Commission of 1988. The Commission had said that if the single largest party fails to prove its majority then the next party must be given a chance. This has been followed by the Supreme Court in various judgments.

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