In a significant development, Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari on Saturday urged Vice President and Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Venkaiah Naidu and Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla to come up with an advisory to maintain the sanctity of the oath-taking process by lawmakers.
Citing how some newly-elected parliamentarians or legislators depart from the prescribed form of oaths by adding names of party leaders or other venerable leaders, he urged Naidu and Birla to issue the format to be adhered to in the context of the form and oath being read out by the members.
“Adding names of party leaders or any other person to whom members owe their faith or allegiance, to the form at of oath-taking, violates the sanctity of oath-taking process,” said Koshyari, adding such directions are needed to preserve the “sanctity and dignity” of the swearing-in process.
The Governor’s suggestion came in separate letters to the presiding officers of the Rajya Sabha and the Lok Sabha, barely a couple of days after a similar incident was witnessed in the Rajya Sabha.
On July 22, after the oath was administered to Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) member Udayanraje Bhosale, he raised a slogan of “Jai Hind, Jai Maharashtra, Jai Bhavani, Jai Shivaji” which attracted a gentle warning from Naidu.
The following day, protests erupted in Maharashtra over the Vice President’s objection which resulted in him issuing an official clarification on Thursday evening.
Koshyari reminded Naidu of a similar situation in Maharashtra when he had to personally intervene and direct a couple of MLAs who were sworn-in as ministers not to deviate from the prescribed format of the oath.
On December 30, 2019, when Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray expanded his ministry, the Governor stopped one minister Varsha Gaikwad mid-way in the oath when she deviated and asked another minister K. C. Padvi to repeat the oath after he strayed from the given format.