The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Resignation buzz swirls around solicitor-general

New Delhi, Oct. 28: Solicitor-general Harish Salve is understood to have put in his papers as he was reportedly unhappy with the government.

Government sources believe that the reason for Salve’s resignation was the feelers he was getting that the Centre was no longer interested in elevating him to the attorney-general’s post, which falls vacant in about a week.

Sources close to him said that the solicitor-general was given to understand by the top brass in the Central government that he would replace attorney-general Soli Sorabjee.

Salve’s three-year tenure is also coming to an end around the same time as that of Sorabjee.

Salve neither confirmed nor denied suggestions that he has offered to step down. “Wait for a day and you would get the larger picture,” he told The Telegraph. He also refused to speak on his chances to replace Sorabjee.

Asked whether the immediate reason for his stepping down was the Supreme Court judgment on Gujarat, which has gone against the Centre’s stand on early polls, Salve, who argued the case, said he was delighted with the apex court’s order.

“Most of my points were upheld by the judges, including the one relating to the six-month outer limit between two Assembly sittings,” Salve said.

The court also upheld Salve’s contention that the poll panel could not make recommendations for imposition of President’s rule as it was beyond its jurisdiction. The poll panel had suggested in a report after a tour of Gujarat that Central rule is an option, if elections are not held within the stipulated period in the state.

Union law minister Jana Krishnamurthi said he was not aware of Salve’s resignation. But Krishnamurthi added that the two posts (that of attorney-general and solicitor-general) would fall vacant by November 3-4 and the matter was under serious consideration.

The sources said Salve was buoyant about his prospects of rising up the ladder because he had recently won important litigation for the government.

One of the successful cases related to the NCERT’s text books in which the court upheld the Centre’s contention that the syllabus would not lead to saffronisation of education.

Salve did not attend office today and worked mostly from his South Delhi residence, law ministry sources said.

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