NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed a plea questioning the practice of appointing Deputy Chief Ministers in States, for lacking substance and merit.
The court said the Deputy Chief Minister was just an appellation which does not breach any constitutional provision.
“A Deputy CM is first and foremost a minister in the government of a state. The designation of deputy CM does not breach the constitutional position. The challenge which is addressed before this court lacks substance and the petition is accordingly dismissed,"
a bench led by Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud said in its order.
The court passed its order on a PIL filed by Public Political Party.
The bench told the counsel, representing the Public Political Party, that the Deputy Chief Ministers are only treated as seniors to others and they don’t draw higher salaries.
The counsel said appointment of Deputy Chief Ministers is setting a wrong example for other authorities in the government department.
"What is the basis for their appointment, the basis is only religion and particular sect of the society. There is no other basis for appointment on such posts,”
the counsel contended.
He also claimed the practice is against Article 14 of the Constitution.
The bench, however, said that a Deputy CM is an MLA and a minister and thus, the post doesn't breach any constitutional provision.
The court also said the Deputy CM the first and foremost a minister.
In the PIL, the petitioner challenged the appointment of Deputy CM in states, contending that no such office is stipulated in the Constitution.