As the election day is fast approaching, the Congress camp is developing cold feet. In fact, Gadwal MLA D K Aruna approached the Supreme Court, which refused to entertain her petition, after the High Court of Hyderabad had dismissed it.
Aruna had approached the High Court seeking a direction to the Governor against the dissolution of Telangana Assembly and invoke a procedure under Article 174 of the Constitution. Even Congress senior leader Marri Sashidhar Reddy too is seeking a legal remedy to have the elections put off, on the pretext of revision of electoral rolls.
It’s noteworthy that these two leaders are seriously nursing the ambition of becoming Chief Minister if the Congress makes it to power.
Usually, any opposition party, especially the one which is purportedly leading the battle against the government, would always demand the dissolution of the Assembly and seeking of a fresh mandate, more so, when the life of the House is almost coming to a close.
However, the situation seems to be unusual in the case of Telangana. While Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS Party) under the dynamic leadership of the Chief Minister KCR is raring to go to polls, that too all alone without entering into any alliance with any other political party, the Congress, which should have been jumping over the dissolution of the Assembly, appears to have lost it.
With multiple groups pulling the party in different directions; and Telugu Desam Party president N Chandrababu Naidu, who has no strength at all in the State, succeeding in cajoling the Congress high command and deciding to piggyback on the Congress, it is confusion confounded in the Grand Old Party.
The Congress leaders are now suffering from political asphyxia, while the TRS leaders are attacking them from all directions. With elections just less than 40 days away, the ‘not-so-grand” alliance is yet to finalise its candidates.
In fact, KCR had poohpoohed the Congress party’s charge that he was worried about the election outcome. He sought to know at the press conference organized to announce the partial manifesto as to why he would be jittery about the elections.
“It was I who brought the elections. We are seeking popular endorsement to our policies and programs. Why will I be worried? Is there any meaning in what they are talking?” questions super confident KCR.
It may be recalled that Ms D K Aruna had urged that the court direct the Governor to summon the House under Article 174 to invoke his independent discretionary power and place the recommendation of the Cabinet to dissolve the House for its opinion.
The bench, consisting of Chief Justice TB Radhakrishnan and Justice SV Bhat said: “We are in respectful agreement with such propositions of law stated in the above judgment and we follow them.” The bench noted, “Article 163(3) of the Constitution provides that the question whether any and if so what, advice was tendered by ministers to the governor shall not be inquired into in any court.”
It had concurred with the judgment of the HC in R. Krishnaiah vs. Union of India which held “where the Governor has dissolved the State Assembly on the advice of the Council of Ministers, his decision cannot be challenged except on the grounds of mala fides and irrelevant considerations and that when the decision of the Governor is based on the advice of Ministers, the Court cannot go into the sufficiency of the advice.” Undeterred by this decision of the High Court, the Congress MLA approached the Supreme Court. However, the Supreme Court too dismissed the petition as the election process had commenced. The Government of Telangana was represented by Sr counsel Mukul Rohatgi.
The Congress party’s unrelenting fight to seek a legal recourse to have the elections stalled clearly indicates that the Congress has developed cold-feet to fight the polls. Have they lost it already?