‘MLC Vishwanath cannot be Minister’: SC upholds K’taka HC’s order


Team Udayavani, Jan 28, 2021, 1:30 PM IST

New Delhi/Bengaluru: The Supreme Court on Thursday upheld Karnataka High’s order that said H. Vishwanath, one of the 17 MLAs whose opportunistic desertion of the Janata Dal (Secular) led to the downfall of the coalition government of Congress and the JDS, cannot become a Minister.

The High court last year had based the decision on a technicality as Vishwanath is currently a ‘nominated’ Member of the Legislative Council (MLC) and not an ‘elected’ member.

Vishwanath, who belongs to the Kuruba caste, was a senior leader of the JD (S) when he switched over to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). He was one of the 17 MLAs disqualified by Ramesh Kumar, the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly, for defection.

Vishwanath and another disqualified MLA did not manage to get reelected in the subsequent byelections that fortified the BJP’s government in the State.

He was nominated to the Legislative Council by Governor Vajubhai R. Vala as it was the only route by which he could fulfil his ambition to become a Minister. The Supreme Court’s ruling has closed this route for now.

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