The Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to pass an order on the request of the Karnataka Congress regarding fresh audio clip in which Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa is purportedly referring to the 17 rebel Congress-JD(S) MLAs who were disqualified as assembly members.
A three-judge bench headed by Justice NV Ramana said that since it has already reserved its verdict on a batch of petitions, filed by the MLAs challenging the decision of the then assembly Speaker KR Ramesh Kumar to disqualify them, no further order was required to be passed at present.
"As judgment in these matters has already been reserved on October 25, 2019, no further orders are required at present," said the bench, also comprising Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Krishna Murari.
The top court said the issue raised regarding hospitality provided to the rebel MLAs in Mumbai, allegedly by the BJP, was already brought before it during the hearing on the pleas filed by these disqualified lawmakers.
A purported audio clip of Mr Yediyurappa, expressing anguish against his party leaders at a recent party meeting in Hubballi over their opposition to giving tickets to the disqualified Congress-JD(S) MLAs for the December 5 assembly bypolls in 15 constituencies, had surfaced last Friday.
In the audio, he is purportedly heard saying that the MLAs, who were later disqualified, were kept in Mumbai during the final days of the coalition government under BJP president Amit Shah's watch.
Bypolls to 15 out of 17 seats represented by the disqualified MLAs will be held on December 5.
Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for Karnataka Congress, told the bench that in the audio clip, Mr Yediyurappa has said during the core committee meeting of the BJP that the whole thing was "engineered" by the BJP national president.
He said since the top court has reserved its verdict on the batch of petitions filed by the disqualified MLAs, they want to place the audio clip on record.
"You have extensively covered everything in the arguments," the bench told Mr Sibal.
Mr Sibal, however, told the bench that audio clip have surfaced after arguments were over in the top court.