Tamil Nadu Governor not to intervene in Assembly trust vote

Chennai: The Tamil Nadu Governor CH Vidyasagar Rao will not interfere in the proceedings of the Assembly despite Opposition parties asking him to “nullify” the vote of confidence won by Chief Minister Edappadi K. Palanisami. He is said to be of the view that the aggrieved parties can approach the judiciary if they feel the need, according to sources close to Raj Bhavan.

Rao is understood to have told the delegation from the O.Panneerselvam splinter group of AIADMK and the DMK which sought nullification of the vote of confidence won by Palanisamy since the voting was held in the absence of the entire Opposition and the Speaker did not conduct a secret ballot.

“The Governor is of the view that he cannot interfere in the proceedings of the Assembly and that the Speaker has all the powers to run the House and proceedings. Hence, he is going by the rulebook in not interfering,” sources said.

Rao, sources said, is also convinced that Palanisami enjoys the confidence of 122 MLAs and there was no need for him to suspect those numbers. According to sources, the Governor is believed to have told leaders from the Opposition parties that they were free to approach the courts if they feel aggrieved about the happenings in the Tamil Nadu Assembly on February 18.

During their separate meetings with Rao on February 19, Panneerselvam and the DMK demanded nullification of the trust vote alleging that the motion was adopted by contravening rules of the Tamil Nadu Assembly.

The Governor had last week decided to invite Palanisami to form the government and asked him to prove his majority within 15 days. The Governor had gone by the advice of legal experts who said he should call the leader with the support of required number of legislators should be invited to form the government.

Of course, the Governor had decided to ignore the advice of legal luminaries, including the Attorney General that a composite floor test could be held to determine who had the majority support within the ruling party.

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