A single bench of the Manipur High Court led by Justice Kh Nobin Singh which has reserved his order on July 2 on several petitions filed by different parties seeking disqualification of Manipur Minister Th Shyamkumar under the Anti-Defection Law, on Tuesday has disposed the case.
In an order, Justice Kh Nobin Singh states that the matter is within the purview of the state assembly speaker Yumnam Khemchand Singh.
Minister Th Shyamkumar elected from Andro AC on a Congress ticket but he switched off his allegiance to BJP even before he was sworn in as an MLA in March 2017. He was given Ministerial portfolio in charge of MAHUD, Forest & Environment and Horticulture and Soil Conservation Departments.
Senior advocates A Romen and N Ibotombi were for the petitioners and senior advocates Ng Kumarjit, HS Haonam, S Chittaranjan, Ramphamani and M Nilachandra for the respondent.
N Biren Singh, the leader of the state BJP was sworn in as Chief Minister of the coalition Government on March 15, 2017. Though, BJP won just 21 seats in the 60 member Manipur Legislative Assembly election held in 2017, they are being supported by eight Congress MLAs, four NPP MLAs, four NPF MLAs, one LJP MLA, one TMC MLA and one Independent MLA taking the total tally in their camp to 40.
Since the changing the royalty of Th Shyamkumar, a number of petitions were filed at the High Court by Congress MLAs Md Fajur Rahim, K Meghachandra, ex-MPCC president TN Haokip and others separately seeking disqualification of Shyamkumar.
All the parties which have been petitioning the High Court to disqualify Th Shyamkumar have been contending that Th Shyamkumar violated the Constitution's 10th Schedule, known as Anti-Defection Law, by switching allegiance to BJP.
As all these petitions have been seeking disqualification of Th Shyamkumar, the High Court clubbed together all of them.
After holding several rounds of hearing earlier, the petitions were heard again and on July 02 by a single bench of Justice Kh Nobin Singh. After hearing both the petitioners and the respondents, Justice Kh Nobin Singh reserved his order.
Interestingly, similar petitions seeking disqualification of 7 other Congress MLAs who are supporting the BJP-led coalition Government are pending at the Manipur Legislative Assembly Speaker's Tribunal as well as the High Court of Manipur.
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