NEW DELHI: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Monday justified the imposition of President’s rule in Uttarakhand, saying Chief Minister Harish Rawat should have quit after failure of the Appropriation Bill, but constitutional breakdown was compounded further by his actions.
“Having plunged the state into a serious constitutional crisis by continuing a government which should have quit after the failure of the Appropriation Bill, and further complicating the crisis, the chief minister started allurement, horse-trading and disqualification with a view to altering the composition of the house,” Jaitley said in a Facebook post.
He also criticised Uttarakhand assembly Speaker Govind Kunjwal for suspending rebel Congress legislators.
“The majority was declared to be a minority and vice versa and the composition of the house was attempted to be changed in violation of the Constitution to convert a minority into a majority,” he said, referring to the March 18 proceedings of the assembly and the speaker’s decision to suspend the nine rebel Congress lawmakers.
Terming this move of the speaker as unprecedented,Jaitley said, “This leaves the state without any approved financial expenditure with effect from April 1. What better evidence do we need of a breakdown of the Constitution?”
“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 April 1,” he said.