Congress lawyers
Congress lawyers

Congress moves SC over appointment of Bopaiah as pro tem speaker

ANI | Updated: May 18, 2018 22:25 IST

New Delhi [India], May 18 (ANI): Soon after the Congress criticised the appointment of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator K.G. Bopaiah as pro-tem speaker of the Karnataka Assembly, lawyers representing Congress reached the registrar office of the Supreme Court on Friday.
The lawyers sought an urgent hearing on the appointment of Bopaiah on the same issue.
The petition claimed that the appointment of pro-tem speaker was completely unconstitutional and illegal.
Meanwhile, Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad told ANI, "MLAs are with us. Whatever misuse they had to do they have done. Supreme Court has also given them a good scolding not verbally but in terms of action, it is a different matter that the people of BJP have a thick skin".
Earlier in the day, Congress accused Governor Vajubhai Vala of "encountering the Constitution" by appointing KG Bopaiah as pro-tem speaker instead of a senior most MLA.
Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said, "The Governor has once again launched an encounter on the Constitution by appointing KG Bopaiah as pro tem Speaker instead of the senior most MLA. Appointment of KG Bopaiah as pro tem Speaker violates constitutional traditions and parliamentary practices."
Vala on Friday appointed Bopaiah as pro-tem speaker ahead of floor test tomorrow in the state assembly, breaking the convention of appointing the senior-most legislator.
Bopaiah is a senior BJP leader and had won from the Virajpet seat in Karnataka. He had secured 77,944 votes and defeated Congress candidate Arun Machaiah by 13,353 votes in the recently-concluded assembly election, winning for the fourth time.
On being asked if Congress will challenge BJP MLA KG Bopaiah's appointment as pro tem Speaker, Surjewala said, "We will be able to inform you in a short while. Yes, the option of going back to Court is open."
The BJP has 104 MLAs but they are still short of the simple majority mark of 113 by nine MLAs and have been given 24 hours to prove the same in the Karnataka assembly by the apex court tomorrow.
However, if two 'missing' Congress MLAs do not get to vote tomorrow, the halfway mark will fall to 111.
On the other hand, Congress (78 seats) and JD-S (37 seats), along with two independent candidates have formed a post-poll alliance and are staking a claim to form the government in Karnataka, with a total of 115 MLAs. (ANI)