Fate of 18 AIADMK MLAs hangs in balance as HC delivers split verdict
They had filed petitions challenging their disqualification by Speaker under the anti-defection law
In a relief to the Palaniswami government, the Madras high court delivered a split verdict on petitions challenging disqualification of 18 AIADMK MLAs loyal to sidelined leader TTV Dhinakaran. In the keenly awaited judgment, Chief Justice Indira Banerjee upheld the September 18 last order of Tamil Nadu assembly Speaker P Dhanapal disqualifying the MLAs, whileJustice M Sundar disagreed with her and struck it down. "In my opinion, the Speaker's decision is not unreasonable," she said.
The senior-most judge after her will decide the judge who would hear the matter afresh, Justice Banerjee said. She also said status quo would continue till the third judge gave his order. Justice Sundar in his order said, "I respectfully submit that I disagree with the opinion of the CJ and hereby set aside the order passed by the Speaker." The split verdict has come as a big relief to the AIADMK government headed by K Palaniswami as any possible threat to its stability has been averted for now.
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