Frame rules on MLA dis­qual­i­fi­ca­tion: K’taka Speaker to SC

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times Nation - NEWS NET­WORK


New Delhi: Al­leg­ing that the re­cent po­lit­i­cal cri­sis in Kar­nataka, where MLAs were dis­qual­i­fied after they ten­dered their res­ig­na­tion to the then Speaker, may be repli­cated in other states also, the present Speaker pleaded the Supreme Court on Wednes­day to frame guide­lines to deal with such sit­u­a­tions.

With­out di­rectly crit­i­cis­ing the de­ci­sion of his pre­de­ces­sor of dis­qual­i­fy­ing 17 MLAs, Speaker Vish­wesh­war Hegde Kageri told a bench of Jus­tices N V Ra­mana, San­jiv Khanna and Kr­ishna Mu­rari that a bal­ance has to be main­tained be­tween an elected rep­re­sen­ta­tive’s loy­alty to­wards the elec­torate and his party.

So­lic­i­tor Gen­eral Tushar Me­hta, ap­pear­ing for the Speaker, said the is­sue needed to be set­tled once and for all as such sit­u­a­tions may hap­pen any­where in fu­ture. The bench, how­ever, said it would not be pos­si­ble for it to frame guide­lines as the Speaker is a con­sti­tu­tional post and pass­ing such di­rec­tion would amount to ju­di­cial over­reach.

Me­hta con­tended that right of a leg­is­la­tor to re­sign is equally im­por­tant as right of a Speaker to dis­qual­ify a law­maker. Se­nior ad­vo­cate Mukul Ro­hatgi, ap­pear­ing for the dis­qual­i­fied MLAs, told the bench that the dis­qual­i­fi­ca­tion or­der had vir­tu­ally “caged” them as they can­not con­test elec­tion de­spite be­ing not afraid to face the elec­torate. The hear­ing re­mained in­con­clu­sive and would re­sume on Thurs­day.

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