The Supreme Court tonight began hearing at 1:45 am the petition filed by the Congress and the JD(S) challenging Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala's decision to invite the BJP to form the government in the southern state.
The Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra has constituted a bench comprising Justices A K Sikri, S A Bobde and Ashok Bhushan to hear the matter in court number six.
Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi is appearing for the petitioners, while ASG Tushar Mehta is representing the government and Senior Advocate Mukul Rohatgi is arguing for BS Yeddyurappa.
The joint petition by the Congress and the Janata Dal (Secular) has sought a stay on the oath-taking ceremony, as communicated by the governor to the BJP's chief ministerial candidate B S Yeddyurappa.
In a midnight legal push, the Congress had approached the Supreme Court seeking an immediate intervention by the chief justice to stay the move, which it termed as an "encounter of the Constitution".
Senior Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi said the party sought hearing on its petition challenging the governor's decision tonight itself. The Congress termed the governor's decision as "murder of democracy and trampling of Constitution".
Earlier in the evening, Vala invited Yeddyurappa to form the government and take oath as chief minister tomorrow. He also asked Yeddyurappa to seek a vote of confidence within 15 days of assuming office.
(with PTI inputs)