A public interest litigation (PIL) has been filed in the Bombay High Court challenging the decision of Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari allowing the withdrawal of the list of 12 names for the nomination to the legislative council (MLC seats) proposed by the previous Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government led by Uddhav Thackeray in 2020.
Social activist Deepak Jagdev filed the PIL through advocate Nitin Satpute, claiming that the Governor could not have allowed the Eknath Shinde led government to withdraw the letter considering that the legitimacy of the Shinde led government is pending consideration by the Supreme Court of India.
On September 3, CM Shinde sent a letter to the Governor stating: "The 12 names proposed by his predecessor Uddhav Thackeray for the nomination of vacated Members of the Legislative Council (MLC) stand withdrawn".
Within two days, the Governor allowed the withdrawal of the list.
The plea alleges inaction and haste on the part of the Governor, which are politically motivated in the affairs of the government of Maharashtra.
In addition, the PIL states that, as per the Constitution, the Governor can either accept or reject the list. He cannot allow the withdrawal of such a list.
The PIL prays for restoration of the 12 MLCs list and seeks quashing of the Governor’s decision permitting withdrawal of the 12 MLCs list recommended by MVA. It also prays that the HC issue guidelines about the actions of the Governor of the state.
The court "declares the decision of the cabinet to withdraw the nominated MLCs by the present government is bad in law or ultra-virus," the PIL further prays.
The petition also requests that the Governor's office be directed not to "lower the honour of the office of the Governor by encroaching upon the field of the legislature by actively involving in the state's party politics."
Also, the Eknath Shinde-led government is directed to refrain from taking any decision before proving the legitimacy or legality of forming the government, it adds.
It further prays that a high-level committee comprising retired IAS, IPS, senior advocates, and officers headed by a retired HC judge be formed "to scrutinise and evaluate every decision of the present illegal government as the present government is functioning without recognition in law."
The PIL is likely to come up for a hearing on September 19.