Hyderabad: Governor E.S.L. Narasimhan, who will complete 10 years at Raj Bhavan next month, is all set to repeat a precedent that he created when he swears in at least two Opposition YSRC legislators in Andhra Pradesh into the N. Chandrababu Naidu Cabinet on Sunday.
Legislators elected from one party cannot be inducted into a Cabinet led by another political party or alliance, without their party of origin forming part of the alliance.
The first time Mr Narasimhan oversaw this practice was when Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao recommended the inclusion of Mr Talasani Srinivas Yadav, who was elected on a TD ticket, into his Cabinet on December 16, 2014. Mr Srinivas Yadav continues to be TS minister and TD legislator.
At that time, Mr Naidu had spearheaded an attack on both the Governor and Mr Chandrasekhar Rao for inducting Mr Srinivas Yadav, without following rules and ethics.
Now, Mr Naidu has recommended the names of a few YSRC MLAs to be elevated as ministers in the Cabinet reshuffle slated for 9.25 am on Sunday to Mr Narasimhan.
Sources in the Raj Bhavan said there was no impropriety on the part of the Governor in inducting such persons into the Cabinet. According to them, Article 164 of the Constitution only says the Governor has to induct ministers as per the advice of the CM.
There is no clear-cut provision governing the party affiliation of the legislator being inducted into the Cabinet. The Constitution requires anyone who has been made minister to be elected from either House within six months.
“It is for the political authority like the Chief Minister to follow guidelines or principles before recommending the names to the Governor. In the case of Mr Srinivas Yadav, he was an MLA before swearing-in and did not suffer any disqualification,” the source said.
The TD had moved courts over the induction of Mr Srinivas Yadav, who neither left his Telugu Desam seat nor was disqualified under the anti-defecton law. However, the courts did not issue any notice to the Governor as he enjoys immunity under Article 361 of the Consitution.
Notices were served to the Speaker on the matters of disqualification and the issue is still pending in the court. The announcement of Mr Srinivas Yadav that he had tendered his resignation as MLA and member of the Telugu Desam a few hours before being sworn in as minister drew flak.
Though he said he had tendered his resignation, the fate of his resignation letter is unknown. Speaker Madhusudana Chary subsequently recognised 12 out of the 15 TD MLAs — who formed two-thirds of the TD Legislature Party — as having merged with the ruling TRS Legislature Party almost after a year of this episode; Mr Srinivas Yadav was among them.
Mr Chandrasekhar Rao has so far admitted 25 Opposition legislators into the TRS since 2014. Mr Naidu who has been demanding defectors should resign before joining another party, had also admitted 21 YSRC MLAs out of 67 into his party, without insisting on resignations of their membership of the House and is now inducting them into the Cabinet.