Leader of Opposition in Maharashtra assembly Vijay Wadettiwar on Saturday demanded that the hearing of the disqualification pleas of Shiv Sena MLAs by Speaker Rahul Narwekar be broadcast live.
MLAs from Shiv Sena factions led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and his predecessor Uddhav Thackeray have filed disqualification pleas against each other after the party split following a rebellion led by Shinde last year.
Narwekar said on Friday that he would hear the petitions next week.
Taking to X, Wadettiwar said that the disqualification petitions arising out of the rebellion in Shiv Sena are pending before the Speaker and the people of Maharashtra who are committed to the principles of justice and democracy are looking forward to it.
He said the hearing of the petitions should be broadcast live to ensure that people’s trust in constitutional institutions, posts and democracy remains intact.
“I have made the demand for the live broadcast (of the proceedings) to Speaker Rahul Narwekar,” Wadettiwar said.
Earlier this week, the Supreme Court directed Narwekar to spell out the timeline within a week for adjudication of the disqualification petitions filed against Shinde and his Sena MLAs who tied up with the BJP to form a new government in June 2022, saying apparently nothing has been done so far despite its direction for deciding the pleas within a reasonable time.
“The hearing on the disqualification pleas will be early next week,” Narwekar told PTI on Friday without elaborating on the dates.
Last week, Narwekar began hearing the disqualification petitions filed against each other by rival Sena factions led by Shinde and Thackeray. A total of 34 petitions are being heard. Both factions are being represented by their respective lawyers.
In July, Narwekar had issued notices to 40 MLAs of the Shinde-led Sena and 14 of the Thackeray faction, seeking their replies on disqualification petitions against them.
MLA Sunil Prabhu, in his capacity as the chief whip of the undivided Shiv Sena, had filed the disqualification petitions against Shinde and 15 MLAs last year after they rebelled and joined hands with the BJP to form a new government in June 2022.
On May 11 this year, the Supreme Court ruled that Shinde will continue to be the CM of Maharashtra. The apex court also said it cannot reinstate the Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) coalition government headed by Uddhav Thackeray as the latter chose to resign without facing a floor test in the wake of Shinde’s rebellion.
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