The top court on Friday refused to refer a petition related to the June 2022 Maharashtra political crisis triggered by the Shiv Sena’s division to a seven-judge bench for reconsideration of the 2016 Nabam Rebia judgment.
The 2016 judgment deals with the powers of assembly speakers to decide on disqualification petitions.
A five-judge Constitution bench headed by Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud said whether the 2016 Nabam Rebia judgement requires reference or not will be considered with the merits of the case on February 21.
“Consequently, hearing on merits of the case will be held on Tuesday, 10:30 am,” said the bench, which also comprises justices M R Shah, Krishna Murari, Hima Kohli and P S Narasimha.
Lawyers Kapil Sibal and A M Singhvi, appearing for the Uddhav Thackeray faction of the Shiv Sena, had sought reference of the cases to a seven-judge bench for a re-look at the Nabam Rebia judgment.
Senior advocates Harish Salve and N K Kaul, appearing for the party’s Eknath Shinde-led faction, had opposed the reference to a larger bench.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for the Maharashtra governor, had also opposed any move to refer the matter to a larger bench.
In 2016, a five-judge Constitution bench ruled in the Arunachal Pradesh case of Nabam Rebia that the assembly speaker cannot proceed with a plea for disqualification of MLAs if a prior notice seeking the speaker’s removal is pending before the House.