September 14, 2017
Chennai: Even after ousting the Mannargudi family from the party leadership, the EPS-OPS combine are under the threatening glare of TTV Dinakaran. Now he has shifted the battle to the Madras High Court on Thursday with a plea for floor test, something that DMK working president MK Stalin has also sought.
Leading advocate and former union minister Kapil Sibal was leading the charge of the ‘opposition’ when he took up the issue of apprehensions that the government may engineer the disqualification of 19 MLAs of Dinakaran and turn the minority government into a majority one. Sibal sought the court to prevent such an eventuality.
It was then that Mr Justice M Duraiswamy asked the advocate general as to the status of the 19 MLAs and if the apprehensions had any ring of reality. The advocate general, Vijaya Nayarayan told the court that the action against the MLAs was already initiated and that “the court could not intervene in the powers of the legislature.” But he said that he could not say what the action could be as it was still underway.
Then the High Court stayed the conduct of floor test before September 20, asking the speaker not to conduct one till next Wednesday when the case will again be taken up.
Meanwhile, the deadline for the 19 MLAs to give their explanation to speaker for their ‘rebellion against party leadership by withdrawing support to EPS’ ran out today. It is being expected that the speaker could take action against the MLAs, and if they are disqualified then the magic number for the government in the assembly would come down to 110. It has the support of 114 MLAs already.
The court ruling prevents any change in the composition of the assembly, in which as per the numbers, the EPS government would become a minority one as it has just 114 MLAs supporting it.
The half way mark is 117, which EPS does not have, Dinakaran said.
P Vetrivel, senior MLA of the Dinakaran camp has already met the speaker twice on the notice issued to the MLAs for explanation. Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu governor, C Vidyasagar Rao, is said to be arriving in Chennai on Monday.