Venugopal recuses himself from assisting SC in Palaniswami trust vote matter

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New Delhi, July 7 (IANS) Attorney General K.K. Venugopal on Friday recused himself from assisting the Supreme Court on a plea challenging the February 18 trust vote secured by Tamil Nadu Chief Minister E.K. Palaniswami and seeking fresh vote through secret ballot.

Venugopal told the bench of Justice Dipak Misra and Justice A.M.Khanwilkar that he would not be able to assist the court as he had given legal opinion to the AIADMK faction led by former Chief Minister O. Panneerselvam.

The court had on July 5 asked Venugopal to assist the court in the hearing of the petition by Panneerselvam faction leader K. Pandianrajan, who contended that in February 18 trust vote, AIADMK law makers in the State assembly had voted allegedly under distress.

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As Venugopal informed the bench of his recusal, the court asked to tell Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar to assist the court. “Inform the Solicitor General about the recusal. Ask him to assist in the matter,” it said.

The matter is already listed for hearing on July 1.

The court in the earlier hearing of the matter on July 5 was told by senior counsel Gopal Subramanium that lawmakers in the state assembly had sought secret ballot on the confidence motion but the plea was declined by Speaker P. Dhanapalan.



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