High Court Restores 20 AAP MLAs

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Delhi High Court

The High Court in Delhi set aside the Election Commision’s recommendations of disqualifying 20 Aam Aadmi Part (AAP) MLAs in an office of profit case on Friday.

The ecstatic Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal called it a win of truth and congratulated the people of Delhi.

He tweeted,” Truth has triumphed. Representatives elected by the people of Delhi were wrongly disqualified. Delhi high court has delivered justice. I congratulate the people of Delhi. This is the victory of people Delhi.”

However, it is just a temporary relief to the legislators. The court has restored their membership but the bench consisted of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Chander Shekhar referred the case back to the Election Commission of India (ECI)  where it is directed to hold fresh hearings as MLAs have alleged they did not get a proper hearing.

The MLAs were appointed parliamentary secretaries to minister in the Delhi government in March 2015. It happened soon after they were elected to the Delhi Assembly.

In September 2016 the Delhi High Court had ruled against their appointment as parliamentary secretaries, after hearing their pleas on a regular basis since February 7.

On January 24, the High court refused to stay the Centre’s notification disqualifying them but had restrained the poll panel from taking any “precipitate measure” such as announcing dates for by-polls to fill the vacancies.

Earlier the MLAs were disqualified after their appointment as Parliamentary Secretaries for holding an office-of-profit.

On January 19 the EC recommended the disqualification of 20 AAP MLAs- Sanjeev Jha, Adarsh Shastri, Rajesh Gupta, Kailash Gahlot, Sharad Kumar, Praveen Kumar, Vijendra Garg, Madan Lal, Alka Lamba, Sarita Singh, Shiv Charan Goyal, Naresh Yadav, Rajesh Rishi, Anil Kumar, Som Dutt, Avtar Singh, Manoj Kumar, Sukhvir Singh Dala, Nitin Tyagi and Jarnail Singh.

The President, Ramnath Kovind had accepted the EC’s opinion on January 20.

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