Disqualification of 7 MLAs: Speaker reserves judgment sine die, Cong to file SLP in SC

Disqualification of 7 MLAs: Speaker reserves judgment sine die, Cong to file SLP in SC

TMB Report

IMPHAL: The Speaker’s Tribunal of the Manipur Legislative Assembly has on Friday reserved its judgment on disqualification case of seven Congress MLAs sine die.

Meanwhile, reports say Congress MLA will be filing SLP to Supreme Court for further proceedings against the Speaker’s Tribunal for not taking up necessary action regarding the said cases.

Hearing of the preliminary objection petitions filed by the counsels of the seven MLAs was held at the Speaker’s Tribunal of the Manipur Legislative Assembly from 11 AM. Counsels of the MLAs filed the preliminary objection praying the Speaker’s tribunal not to accept the disqualification petitions against the seven MLAs, citing it lacks merit and proper investigation.  Later, the Speaker’s tribunal reserved the judgment without fixing a date.

“The judgment has been reserved without fixing a date for announcement in view of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the tribunal will make its best effort to announce the judgment as earliest as possible”, Speaker Yumnam Khemchand told reporters on the sideline of inspection visit at the community quarantine centre opened at Manipur College.

Taking serious note of the speculative report on the pending judgment/hearing of the Speaker’s Tribunal published in some local dailies, the Speaker appealed to the journalists to avoid such type of reporting.

I sincerely appreciate the role of the journalists in society. However, I would like to appeal to the journalists, serving in a parliamentary democratic country, to be cautious in their reporting, said the Speaker.

The seven Congress MLAs who are facing 15 disqualification petitions are Oinam Lukhoi, Kshetrimayum Biren, Paonam Brojen, Sanasam Bira, Ngamthang Haokip, Ginsuanhao and Yengkhom Surchandra.

The disqualification petitions were filed by some Congress MLAs and other individuals. The petitioners include  Khuraijam Dorendro, Kh Basantakumar, MLA K Ranjit, Khundrakpam Gopal, Paonam Herabi, MLA O Henaray, Thongram Surchandra, L Ronendro, MLA K Govindas, M Sova, Salam Jayentakumar, MLA Kh Joykishan, MLA K Meghachandra and MLA Surajkumar Okram.

 Congress MLA K. Meghachandra had earlier`said that Congress party would approach the Supreme Court again to seek disqualification of the seven Congress MLAs who switched allegiance to ruling BJP with the Speaker’s tribunal of Manipur Legislative Assembly having failed to take a decision regarding disqualification of the said MLAs within three months as per the judgment order passed by the apex court. 

Supreme court, in a landmark judgment passed on January 21, 2020, had directed the Speaker’s tribunal of Manipur Legislative Assembly to decide on all the pending disqualification cases including the case of the seven MLAs, who joined BJP within three months.  The landmark judgment was widely appreciated across the nation and different stated have started applying the judgment. Following the SC judgment, Minister Th. Shyamkumar, who represents Andro AC as MLA, has recently been disqualified from being a member of the Manipur Legislative Assembly.

Notably, in para 28 of the SC judgment, the Congress party’s petitioners were given liberty to approach the apex court again if the Speaker’s tribunal fails to take a decision on the disqualification petitions within three months.

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