TN Governor Ravi concedes, to appoint DMK leader Ponmudy as minister today

SC had given governor a 24-hour deadline to decide on Ponmudy’s cabinet induction

R.N. Ravi (File) Tamil Nadu Governor R.N. Ravi during the Assembly session | PTI

Tamil Nadu Governor R.N. Ravi informed the Supreme Court that he would administer ministerial oath to DMK leader K. Ponmudy at 3.30pm on Friday. The move comes after the apex court came down heavily on the governor for defying its orders on Thursday.

Appearing for the governor, Attorney General R. Venkantaramani submitted to Chief Justice D.Y. Chandrachud-led bench that the governor has invited Ponmudy for swearing-in at 3.30pm today and he had “least intent to disregard the Court”, Live Law reported. The AG informed the court that the governor’s decision was based on his understanding of certain judgments of the Supreme Court.

Despite Chief Minister M.K. Stalin’s recommendation, Governor Ravi refused to appoint DMK legislator Ponmudy as minister citing constitutional morality. Ponmudy, who served as higher education minister in the Stalin cabinet earlier was disqualified from the Tamil Nadu Assembly after the Madras High Court convicted him in a disproportionate assets case. However, he was reinstated as legislator on May 13 after the Supreme Court suspended his conviction.

Voicing "serious concern" over the conduct of Ravi for his refusal to re-induct senior DMK leader K. Ponmudy as a minister in the state cabinet, the Supreme Court on Thursday directed him to decide the issue within 24 hours. 

"Mr Attorney General, we are seriously concerned about the conduct of the governor. We did not want to say it out loud in court but he is defying the Supreme Court of India. Those who have advised him have not advised him properly. Now the governor has to be informed that when the Supreme Court stays a conviction, it stays a conviction," the bench told AG R. Venkataramani. "If we do not hear from your person tomorrow, we will pass an order directing the governor to act according to the Constitution. we will pass an order," the bench told the AG on Thursday.

-with PTI inputs.

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