The petition of BJP legislative party leader Babulal Marandi associated with anti-defection was heard at Jharkhand High Court in the court of Chief Justice Dr Ravi Ranjan and Justice SN Prasad. Senior advocate Kapil Sibal appearing for the Speaker, said that the Speaker has the right to issue notice and it has been passed by the Assembly.
RN Sahay appearing for Babulal Marandi said that the Court hearing pleas of both the parties fixed the hearing on Thursday. The court also directed the Speaker to file an affidavit.
It may be noted that the Speaker's petition to the Supreme Court in this case has been dismissed on Tuesday. The Supreme Court refused to entertain a special leave petition filed by the Speaker of Jharkhand assembly challenging the stay order by the Jharkhand High Court on the disqualification notice served on Babulal Marandi MLA.
A bench headed by the Chief Justice of India said that the bench was not inclined to entertain the plea as the High Court is set to hear the writ petition filed by Marandi.
Senior Advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the Speaker, submitted that a writ petition challenging a notice issued by the Speaker to initiate proceedings under the tenth schedule of the Constitution for defection by a legislator is not maintainable. The CJI told Sibal that the point can be raised before the High Court. While disposing of the SLP, the bench requested the High Court to dispose of the matter 'peremptorily'.
Last month, BJP leader Babulal Marandi filed a caveat petition in the Apex Court as Jharkhand Assembly was planning to knock the door of Supreme Court against the order of the Jharkhand High Court to revoke the interim stay order on notice served to Marandi for violation of 10th schedule or anti defection law.
Marandi was granted interim relief by the Jharkhand High Court when he challenged the notice served by the Speaker, asking why an action should not be initiated against him for the violation of the law.
Marandi was sent a notice for the violation of anti-defection law on the application of JMM legislature Bhusan Tirkey on December 17. Marandi was an elected leader of the BJP Legislature Party after he merged his party JVM with BJP, but the Speaker’s Court refused to grant status to merger and due to this he could not get the status of leader of opposition in the Assembly. Also, the Assembly Speaker Ravindra Nath Mahato, taking cognisance of the merger of Marandi’s faction of the Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (JVM) with the BJP, issued a notice against him under the anti-defection law.