Kerala

Governor slams govt. over SC appeal

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Khan says he was kept in the dark about the decision

Governor Arif Mohammad Khan has indicated that the State government has crossed the line by keeping him in the dark about its decision to appeal against the Citizenship (Amendment) Act (CAA) in the Supreme Court.

Mr. Khan, who spoke to journalists at the airport on Thursday before leaving for Delhi, said he had learned about the development from newspapers.

Upping the ante in his politically volatile dispute with the government over the passage of a resolution in the Assembly opposing the CAA, Mr. Khan said he would examine whether a State could move the apex court against a Central law without the approval of the Governor.

Mr. Khan expressed dismay that he had to learn about the development from newspapers. “I do not dispute the right of the government or any entity or individual to appeal against any law in the Supreme Court. The government need not have taken my approval. But as the constitutional head of the State, they should have shown the courtesy to inform me,” he said.

Mr. Khan, who had faced street protests, black flag demonstrations and heckling at public functions for his support of the CAA, warned that “nobody could be a law on to oneself.”

“This is improper. It is a breach of courtesy and protocol. Nobody is above the law and constitution. Nobody can be allowed to blow up law enforcement,” he said.

The rules of the Assembly stated that the legislature should not discuss any subject which did not come under their constitutional jurisdiction.

However, the Kerala government had challenged the constitutional validity of a Central law in a subject which was not under its jurisdiction. There was no doubt that the government had "transgressed and gone out of its jurisdiction," he said.

“Some people think they are above the law. If somebody has such a notion in their mind, let them get rid of it,” he said.

In an oblique dig at Mr. Khan, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan said in Malappuram that the era of British residencies lording over native princes were over. The legislature was not beholden to any superior political office.

Left Democratic Front (LDF) convener A. Vijayaraghavan accused Mr. Khan of politicking. Law Minister A.K. Balan attempted to play down the issue and said the government had no dispute with the Governor.

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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 5:23:05 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/governor-slams-govt-over-sc-appeal/article30577713.ece

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