Prez disqualifies 20 AAP MLAs, party says 'dangerous for

Kristen Gonzales
January 22, 2018

In a huge setback for the Aam Aadmi Party-led Delhi government, President Ram Nath Kovind approved the expulsion of 20 MLAs from the party in the "office of profit" case. "An appropriate decision will be taken", Joti had said.

The Election Commission on Friday recommended to the President that the 20 MLAs were liable for disqualification for holding offices of profit between March 13, 2015 and September 8, 2016, following which President Kovind gave his acceptance on Saturday.

Welcoming the recommendations of the Election Commission against AAP MLAs, Shabbir Ali, who is also the leader of the Opposition in the Legislative Council, said that the Congress will move the court against 21 other appointments made by KCR in violation of rules.

The AAP has chose to fight it out in the courts, where its principal line of argument will be that the MLAs did not hold offices of profit as Delhi High Court had set their appointments aside in 2016.

A petition filed by lawyer Prashant Patel sought the disqualification of the MLAs on the grounds that they were holding an "office of profit" as parliamentary secretaries. But former President Pranab Mukherjee had refused to approve the measure, and had referred a private petition in the matter to the EC. "It is an act of the Centre using constitutional institutions", she said. "You are mortgaging a constitutional post like the Election Commission", AAP's Delhi unit spokesman Saurabh Bharadwaj alleged.

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The notification came as a response to the EC decision on Friday, January 19, to disqualify 20 AAP MLAs from the Delhi Assembly. Parliamentary Secretaries assist Ministers with their work.

MLAs who are stranded in the office of profit has finally been canceled.

Delhi Congress president Ajay Maken also said the chief minister had lost the moral right to be in power.

Addressing the media at Gandhi Bhavan along with Reventh Reddy, Shabbir said the six MLAs were enjoying all perks, salaries and also protocol on par with those of cabinet ministers though their appointment has been struck down by the court.

The complaint was against 21 MLAs out of which one MLA Jarnail Singh had resigned in January a year ago for contesting Punjab Assembly Polls.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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