A NEW fundraiser has been launched for an action aimed at proving Holyrood can hold a new independence referendum without Westminster’s permission.

Forward as One started the “People’s Action on Section 30” legal action late last year. They began fundraising for the case through Crowd Justice in January and successfully raised £43,658.

After the SNP won 48 seats at last year’s General Election the First Minister requested a transfer of powers to Holyrood to allow a new independence referendum to be held. Boris Johnson rejected this Section 30 request.

But the People’s Action on Section 30 believes this transfer of powers is not required and wants to prove it through the courts.

They have employed one of Scotland’s top lawyers, Elaine Motion, who represented 78 parliamentarians in their successful challenge against Prime Minister Johnson’s decision to prorogue parliament..

At the end of January the UK Government Advocate General was issued with pre-litigation correspondence. Weeks later, the Government responded by telling the group they do not believe the Scottish Parliament has the authority to legislate for indyref2 without permission from Westminster.

In March, a court summons was issued – but the group says since then they have had to deal with several administration motions.

According to the group’s crowdfunder, they had to resist a motion from the Scottish Government to halt proceedings for three months. After that they were subject to a further motion from the Scottish Government which was dropped in the late stages.

READ MORE: Forward as One Scotland set to delay independence court case

A third administrative motion, regarding a protected expenses order, was refused by the court.

Now the group wants to raise £155,000 as they prepare for a legal debate.

They say: “Our next stage is to lodge with the court- the ‘Open Record’ which is, in effect, the respective arguments and submissions of all the parties to the case in one organised document. Its purpose is to allow easy reference to specific matters within those arguments for all parties (including the court). Once this is lodged, a legal debate hearing of three days will be scheduled.

“In other words, to steal a quote from a certain politician: This case is now 'oven ready' to proceed to oral arguments.”

The fundraiser was launched last night and so far more than £33,000 has been raised from more than 1000 pledges. They have 28 days to go before the deadline.

Explaining the costs, Forward As One say: “As we said previously, we would approach the movement for further fundraising when it became necessary. By way of an estimate. Total costs are projected by the court in the ruling on the protected expenses order to be somewhere in the region of £195,000 in total. We deduct from that total, the sum of £40,000 from the previous fundraiser and we are left with £155,000.

“This is the target we are aiming for. To be clear, if we do not reach our target, legal action will have to be discontinued.”