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The SC directs floor test in Maharashtra to avoid horse trading: under Art. 32.

Supreme Court of India

Justice N V Ramana, Justice Ashok Bhushan and Justice Sanjiv Khanna

The SC { SHIV SENA AND ORS. v. UNION OF INDIA AND ORS.} holds that   in   the  present   case,   oath   has   not   been administered to the elected members even though a month has elapsed since the declaration of election results. In such emergent facts and circumstances, to curtail unlawful practices such as horse  trading,   to   avoid   uncertainty   and   to   effectuate   smooth running of democracy by ensuring a stable Government,  it is necessary to pass certain interim directions   in   this   case.  

It was held by the SC,   it   is   necessary   and expedient   to   conduct   the   floor   test   as   soon   as   possible   to determine whether the Chief Minister, who was administered the oath of office, has the support of the majority or not. Since the elected members of the Legislative Assembly are yet to take oath as   specified   in  the   III   Schedule   of   the   Constitution. Accordingly, the floor test was directed to be conducted on 27/11/2019.

It was further held in a situation wherein, if the floor test is delayed, there is a possibility of horse trading, it becomes incumbent upon the Court to act to protect democratic values. An immediate floor test, in such a case, might be the most effective mechanism to do so. The petition was filed in present case under Art 32 in the SC, and the said direction passed was interim in nature.

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