New Delhi: More than a fortnight after Maharashtra threw up a hung Assembly, President’s Rule was imposed in the state on Tuesday after President Ram Nath Kovind approved Governor BS Koshyari’s request.
Confirming the development, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said, “Proclamation under Article 356(1) of the Constitution, thereby imposing President’s Rule in relation to the state of Maharashtra and keeping the state Assembly under suspended animation, has been issued.”
The decision came after Koshyari sent a report to the Union government saying President’s Rule must be imposed since no party or alliance was in a position to provide a stable government in the state.
“The Governor said he has made all attempts to see government formation but has not met with any success. The Governor is satisfied that a situation has arisen that no stable government can be formed in the state,” an MHA spokesperson told CNN-News18.
The Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and the Congress criticised the Governor's move on the grounds that Sharad Pawar’s party had time till 8:30pm to show its numbers and the Governor jumped the gun at the behest of the BJP.
“President's Rule has to be the last resort. There is a huge difference between a party saying, ‘no, I can't form the government’, and one saying, ‘yes, I can but I need more time,” Congress MP and senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi told CNN-News18.
Rebutting the criticism, the MHA spokesperson said Koshyari decided to recommend President's Rule after NCP leaders met him at 11:30am and sought three more days to prove its numbers. “The report was received from the Governor this afternoon after which the Union Cabinet met, considered it, and recommended President's Rule," added the spokesperson.
Officials who have seen Koshyari’s report said it had no mention of any attempt or apprehension to poach MLAs.
“The only basis of the Governor recommending President's Rule is that in his assessment, no party or alliance has the numbers to form the government,” the MHA official said.
“The Governor is satisfied that governance of the state cannot be carried out in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution,” the ministry official added. “Left with no alternative, the Governor sent a report under Article 356 of the Constitution. President's Rule can be reviewed whenever any party can prove the numbers.”
The Sena has moved the Supreme Court challenging the Governor's recommendation to impose President's Rule.