Sharad Pawar Faction MLAs, Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Issued Notices By HC On Ajit Pawar-Led NCP's Disqualification Plea

Sharad Pawar Faction MLAs, Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Issued Notices By HC On Ajit Pawar-Led NCP's Disqualification Plea

On February 16, Narwekar declared that the NCP faction headed by Ajit Pawar is ‘the real political party’. However, the Speaker refused to disqualify MLAs from the rival faction.

Urvi MahajaniUpdated: Wednesday, February 21, 2024, 09:11 PM IST
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Sharad Pawar and Ajit Pawar | PTI

Mumbai, February 21: The Bombay High Court on Wednesday issued notices to Maharashtra Assembly Speaker Rahul Narwekar and 10 MLAs from the NCP Sharadchandra Pawar faction on a petition filed by Anil Patil, chief whip of the NCP faction led by Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar seeking their disqualification.

A division bench of Justices Girish Kulkarni and Firdosh Pooniwalla has also issued notice to the Maharashtra Legislature Secretariat and asked the respondents to file their reply before the next hearing on March 14.

Ajit Pawar Faction Seeks Disqualification Of Sharad Pawar's MLAs

Patil’s petition questions the “legality, propriety and correctness” of Narwekar’s order, dismissing their disqualification plea against the MLAs of the Sharad Pawar faction. He has sought quashing of the order to the extent of disqualification issue. The plea contends that opposite faction MLAs attract disqualification under Section 2(1)(A) of the 10th Schedule. The bench, however, said that it could not grant interim relief at this stage.

On February 16, Narwekar declared that the NCP faction headed by Ajit Pawar is ‘the real political party’. However, the Speaker refused to disqualify MLAs from the rival faction. The Speaker delivered his verdict on two petitions filed by both factions nearly six months after the party split into two groups.

Senior counsel Mukul Rohatgi and advocate Shriram Varma, appearing for Patil, argued that the Speaker’s major findings were in Ajit’s favour except the part where the 10 MLAs were not disqualified.

Notice Issued To Sharad Pawar Faction MLAs

Rohatgi argued that the actions of the 10 MLAs were against the interests of the party and hence they ought to have been disqualified. “The Speaker has wrongly held that this was a case of internal strife; but that is not our case. This is not just a case of internal dispute,” Rohatgi said seeking that notices be issued as there was an urgency due to the upcoming elections.

The HC then issued notices to the respondents and asked them to file reply affidavits by February March 11 and kept the matter for hearing on March 14.

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