Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday attacked the sacked Congress government in Uttarakhand saying the Speaker was murdering democracy by first declaring a Budget rejected by majority MLAs as passed and then by disqualifying MLAs even after Assembly was put under suspended animation.
In a Facebook post titled “A State Without a Budget’, he said the Congress “plunged the State into a serious constitutional crisis by continuing a Government which should have quit after the failure of the Appropriation Bill”.
To further complicate the crisis, “the Chief Minister started allurement, horse-trading and disqualification with a view to altering the composition of the House”, he said.
“After the Assembly has been put under suspended animation and the decision has been made public, the Speaker has decided to disqualify some Members. The constitutional breakdown has been compounded further by this action,” he said.
The Finance Minister said the Congress government in the state was reduced to minority on March 18 when 35 MLAs in the Assembly voted against the Appropriation Bill and 32 in favour. These 35 MLAs comprised of 27 from the BJP and the rest were rebel Congress legislators.
“On 18th March the majority was declared to be a minority and vice versa, and on 27th March the composition of the House was attempted to be changed in violation of the Constitution to convert a minority into a majority.
“This is an unprecedented case of a Speaker declaring a failed Appropriation Bill as passed and then failing to certify falsehood. This leaves the State without any approved financial expenditure with effect from 1st April 2016,” he said.
Stating that there was no better evidence of a breakdown of Constitution than this, he said, “The Congress Government of Uttarakhand was murdering democracy every day from the 18th of March till the 27th of March.
“It is now incumbent upon the central government to ensure that steps are taken under Article 357 to authorise expenditure of the State with effect from 1st April 2016” as the state cannot spend in next fiscal without the legislature approving the Appropriation Bill, he said.