Anti-defection Law Does Not Apply, Says Legal Expert On Himachal Crisis

Anti-defection law does not apply, says legal expert on Himachal crisis

Shimla, Feb 28 : The anti-defection law does not apply to Rajya Sabha polls as the legislators can vote as per their conscience, Senior Advocate Satya Pal Jain said on Wednesday.

 Anti-defection Law Does Not Apply, Says Legal Expert On Himachal

On the notice to six Congress MLAs who voted for the BJP candidate in the Rajya Sabha elections on Tuesday, Jain said here: “Notice has been served to them by the Speaker as to why they should not be disqualified under the anti-defection law.

“I appeared on their behalf.As per Rule 7, a minimum time of seven days should be given.”

Former BJP MP and Additional Solicitor General of India in Punjab and Haryana High, Jain clarified “it is not a case of anti-defection law.The Supreme Court has clarified many a time regarding the Rajya Sabha polls that exercising franchise or not does not fall under the purview of the anti-defection law”.

A senior official in the state legislative assembly told IANS that “if an MLA has acted against the interest of his own party or government, the Speaker can interpret it as voluntary giving up membership”.”But the MLA does not have to resign.His conduct matters and the Speaker can interpret the actions,” he added.

Meanwhile, the six “rebel” Congress MLAs, who were issued show-cause notice for defying the whip for Rajya Sabha polls, appeared before Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathania along with their lawyer and argued that they had not been provided all relevant documents.

After hearing them, the Speaker reserved his decision.Jain, who represented the six MLAs, argued that they were only given the notice and the copy of the petition filed on Tuesday evening while other annexure were not supplied to them.

“We urged the Speaker to give at least a week’s time as per the principle of natural justice for filing the reply,” he added.

Later, the “rebel” legislators returned to Chandigarh.

Earlier, the Vidhan Sabha was adjourned sine die, a day ahead of schedule, after the passing of Budget for 2024-25 and related Appropriation Bill authorising the government to spend Rs 624,21.73 crore from the consolidated fund.

After the cross-voting by nine members, comprising three Independents, there is question mark over the survival of the Sukhvinder Sukhu-led Congress government.

The BJP has won the lone Rajya Sabha seat in Himachal Pradesh after six Congress MLAs cross-voted in the polls.

In the 68-member Assembly, the Congress had 40 MLAs, while the BJP had 25 and three independent MLAs.

If the Speaker takes action and disqualifies the six rebel Congress MLAs who voted in favour of the BJP, the strength of the House will come down to 62.

The halfway mark will be 31 and the majority will be 32, just two less than Congress’ strength.


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Disclaimer : Editorial Team not involved in creation of this article & holds no responsibility for its content..This Article is Provided by IANS, Please contact IANS if any issues in Article .

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