The Supreme Court on Monday deferred the hearing on the Tamil Nadu government’s plea, accusing Governor R N Ravi of delaying the assent to Bills passed by the state Assembly, to December 1.
The court considered the fact that the Tamil Nadu Assembly has re-adopted 10 Bills returned by the governor.
A bench comprising Chief Justice D Y Chandrachud, Justice J B Pardiwala, and Justice Manoj Misra decided to await the governor’s decision on the re-adopted Bills. The Attorney General (AG) R Venkataramani, representing the Office of the Governor, requested the deferral of the hearing.
The bench, noting the delay in granting assent to Bills, questioned whether there was a delay in discharging the constitutional functions of the governors’ office. The AG argued that the delay could not be attributed to the governor, who took office on November 18, 2021, as there were many intricate issues involved with the Bills.
The bench highlighted that only five Bills were pending assent, as the Assembly re-enacted 10 Bills. Referring to Article 200 of the Constitution, the bench questioned whether the governor could sit over the Bills without sending them back to the Assembly or to the president.
The Tamil Nadu Assembly re-adopted 10 Bills in a special sitting after they were returned by Governor R N Ravi. The Bills were sent to the governor for assent after re-adoption.
On November 10, the Supreme Court sought the Centre’s response to the Tamil Nadu government’s petition alleging the governor’s delay in giving assent to Bills, describing it as a matter of serious concern.
The court also sought the assistance of the attorney general or solicitor general in resolving the issue.