In what comes as a shot in arm for the unified AIADMK faction led by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister E Palaniswami, the Madras High Court on Wednesday extended the stay order on floor test in the state Assembly until further orders.
“There will not be floor tests for next days until counters are filed,” said Aryama Sundaram, lawyer of Tamil Nadu Speaker P Dhanapal.
The court said that there will be no floor test in the Tamil Nadu Assembly until it disposed of all petitions challenging the disqualification of rebel AIADMK MLAs.
Justice M. Duraiswamy gave the order while hearing the petition from legislators owing allegiance to T.T.V. Dinakarn challenging their disqualification by Speaker P. Dhanapal on Monday.
The judge, while extending the stay on a floor test, also ordered that no by-elections will be held to the seats rendered vacant by the disqualification of these 18 MLAs.
The court had last week directed that no floor test will be held till Wednesday, on a petition filed by opposition party DMK.
The DMK party had petitioned that court to order Governor C. Vidyasagar Rao to convene the assembly and ask Chief Minister K. Palaniswami to prove his majority.
The 18 rebel MLAs support expelled former deputy general secretary TTV Dhinakaran and say that their disqualification by Speaker Dhanapal under anti-defection laws doesn’t stand legal as they didn’t join any other party.
The disqualification was a boost to Palaniswami as it brought the halfway mark in the 234-member Assembly down to 108 from 117. The AIADMK government claims the support of 114 MLAs.