Capping a nine-day high-voltage political drama, the Centre on Sunday brought Uttarakhand under President’s rule citing a constitutional breakdown in the wake of a rebellion in the ruling Congress, which slammed the decision calling it a “murder of democracy” and a “black” day.
President Pranab Mukherjee signed the proclamation under Article 356 of the Constitution dismissing the Congress government headed by Harish Rawat and placing the Assembly under suspended animation this morning on the recommendation of the Union Cabinet.
The Centre was of the view that continuance of the Rawat government was “immoral and unconstitutional” after the March 18, 2016, when the Speaker declared the Appropriation Bill “passed” in controversial circumstances without allowing a division pressed for by 35 MLAs, including 9 rebel Congress legislators.
The Union Cabinet had held an emergency meeting on Saturday night presided over by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who had cut short a visit to Assam to return to the capital for the purpose.
The Cabinet considered several reports received from Governor K.K. Paul, who had described the political situation as volatile and expressed apprehensions over possible pandemonium during the scheduled trial of strength in the State Assembly on Monday.
The purported CD of the sting operation conducted against the Chief Minister that was in public domain on Saturday was understood to have been factored into the decision of the Cabinet which found it as a case of horse trading.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is believed to have briefed the President late Saturday night explaining the rationale for the Cabinet’s recommendation.
The dismissal of the Rawat government now renders Monday’s confidence vote infructuous. It also came amidst that Speaker Govind Singh Kunjwal disqualifying nine rebel Congress MLAs that would have enabled Mr. Rawat to sail through in the trust vote.