Mumbai

HC dismisses BJP corporator’s plea on Leader of Opposition in BMC

A division bench of justices SJ Kathawalla and Madhav Jamdar was hearing a petition filed by Mr. Shinde, Councillor from Mulund East through senior advocate Birendra Saraf. File Photo.  

The Bombay High Court on Monday dismissed the plea filed by BJP Corporator Prabhakar Shinde seeking to be appointed as the Leader of the Opposition (LoP) in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC).

Present LoP Ravi Raja from the Congress will continue to be so. A division bench of justices SJ Kathawalla and Madhav Jamdar was hearing a petition filed by Mr. Shinde, Councillor from Mulund East through senior advocate Birendra Saraf.

On February 28, BJP Mumbai president Mangal Lodha had requested Mayor Kishori Pednekar to appoint Mr. Shinde as LoP. However, she refused to do so. Hence the petition challenging the Mayor’s decision to appoint Mr. Raja and that she failed to recognise Mr. Shinde as the leader.

Mr. Shinde urged the court to consider that “though the BJP has earlier decided not to be active in the Opposition, due to the changed political equations, it has now decided to discharge the role of an effective and active Opposition party. What is relevant is that the BJP now seeks to do so.” The court however said, “There is no occasion to consider any pre or post poll alliance.”

It said, “The BJP was admittedly not willing to discharge the obligations and duties of the Office of Leader of Opposition at the relevant time.”

In the 38-page order, the court said, “A mere volte-face or change of heart or decision to increase one’s extent of participation whilst in Opposition, cannot justify the removal of an incumbent Leader of Opposition who was otherwise duly appointed in accordance with law [and as a result of the BJP’s express refusal to accept the post].”

The court said, “We are of the view that the impugned [Mayor’s] decision being just and proper, no interference is required.”

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Printable version | Oct 22, 2020 1:28:15 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/hc-dismisses-bjp-corporators-plea-on-leader-of-opposition-in-bmc/article32662433.ece

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