Congress moves HC against minister’s post for Vikhe Patil, Kshirsagar in Fadnavis government

The Congress has moved the Bombay high court against the induction of Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil and Jaydutt Kshirsagar as ministers, claiming it can’t be done as they have resigned as legislators from the current Assembly.

Vikhe Patil, former leader of the Opposition in the state assembly, defected to the Bharatiya Janata Party from the Congress after his son Sujay was not given a ticket in the Lok Sabha polls, and was handed over the plum housing portfolio in the recent cabinet reshuffle. Kshirsagar, a former Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader, joined the Shiv Sena recently, and was given the employment guarantee and horticulture ministry.

Congress leader Vijay Wadettiwar filed the petition against the two ministers last Thursday. The petition claims that as the leaders have resigned from the current Assembly from the Opposition benches, they should first get elected and then become ministers.

“The Constitution specifies that these leaders, who were already members of the current house, can’t be ministers without getting elected. Moreover, since Assembly polls are due in the next few months, by-elections can’t be held so fast,” said Wadettiwar, adding the rule does not apply to newly inducted minister Avinash Mhatekar, of RPI, as he was not a member of both the houses.

Both Vikhe Patil and Kshirsagar could not be contacted despite several attempts.

First Published:
Jun 24, 2019 13:53 IST

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