Tuesday, May 17, 2011

The Karnataka Crisis

As many of us have been closely following, a political crises is brewing in Karnataka. The SC recently set aside the disqualification of 11 BJP MLA's who had rebelled against the party. I hope to write on the SC judgment in more detail soon, but at first glace it seems to conform to the well established set of precedents which state that the Speaker must conform to certain procedural requirements in his decision, and that the decision is subject to judicial review on narrow administrative law grounds like mala fide, violation of natural justice, and the like.

For now, I just want to point to a surprising editorial in the Indian Express that grossly misrepresents the SC verdict. It states "The Supreme Court recently restored the membership of the 11 rebel BJP MLAs, who had been disqualified by the assembly speaker, thus saving the Yeddyurappa government’s skin.".

The SC did just the opposite! The MLA's were political dissidents who rebelled against the BJP. By reinstating them, the SC threatened the BJP govt. It is no surprise then that BJP members have been criticizing the decision.
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