The chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Shivraj Singh Chauhan had appointed 28 new members in the cabinet. The decision came after a vacancy of 24 members, after the death of 2 MLAs and the resignation of 22.
The appointments increase the total number of cabinet ministers to a total number of 34 as opposed to the cap of 30, calculated as 15 percent of the 206 members.
The petition had been filed by former assembly speaker N P Prajapati claiming that the move violates Article 164(a) of the Indian Constitution. However, the question raised before the court is on the interpretation to be given to the article.
It has been stated that the Chief Minister has misinterpreted the article to mean 15 percent of the total seat of the assembly, 230 in the given case. The interpretation is opposed to the common understanding claimed by the petitioner which is the 15 percent of the total members and not the seats.
A notice was issued by the bench comprising Chief Justice SA Bobde, Justice A S Bopanna and V Ramasubramaniam.