Maha govt formation: Bid to create a legal obstacle

New Delhi: A writ petition was filed in the Supreme Court on Friday seeking directions to Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari not to invite the Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress combo to form a government "against the mandate of the people."

If such a government is formed, it seeks to declare such a government as unconstitutional, void ab initio and hence liable to be dismissed. The petitioner is Surendra Indrabahadur Singh, alias Kamal Singh, a resident of Dindoshi in Mumbai.

Since the petition was filed late on Friday and the court is closed on Saturday and Sunday, it may come up for hearing only by the middle of next week after the registry puts it before the Chief Justice of India, possibly only on Monday.

The petition contends that the mandate of the election was for the Maha-Yuti alliance of the BJP and the Shiv Sena, the two parties which bagged 105 and 56 seats, respectively, giving the combine a clear majority of 161 MLAs in the 288-member Assembly.

The petitioner says he moved the court after giving a representation to both the President of India and the Maharashtra Governor, urging them not to allow Shiv Sena to form the government with the NCP-Congress combine, as it would amount to "cheating the voters" for their opportunistic politics.

He summed up the questions for the court to decide as under:

• Whether a group of parties which contested against each other and fought election expressly against each other in terms of ideology, policies, propaganda and manifesto can form the government?

• Whether an alliance between two political parties that contested against each other is acceptable under the present constitutional scheme?

• Whether the coalition of Shiv Sena, NCP and Congress is against the S R Bommai judgment of the Supreme Court?

• Whether the Constitution draftsmen intended such coalitions to form the government?

The petition says if a coalition of Shiv Sena, with the parties against which it contested the election, is allowed to form a government, it will result in dilution of the mandate of the public and is against constitutional ethos.

The petition claims that the Sarkaria Commission has proscribed such a post-poll alliance. It says the governor is supposed to consider the formation of a popular government while the present post-poll coalition is based on power sharing of two political parties (NCP and Congress) whose alliance as Maha-Aghadi has been voted out by the people.

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