Cong MLA asks Governor to set aside expulsion notification

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Chandigarh, Sep 17 (UNI) Congress MLA, Sukhpal Singh Khaira today demanded that the Vidhan Sabha notification regarding the expulsion of former chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh from the House for the rest of its term should be declared 'null and void' as it was "illegal and unconstitutional".

According to the notification dated September 10, Capt Singh stands expelled from the membership of the 13th Punjab Vidhan Sabha and his seat 76-Patiala Town assembly constituency stands vacated. A copy of the said notification has been sent to the Secretary, Election Commission of India, all MLA's of Punjab and other various departments of the government.

Refering to the notification, Mr Khaira in a communique to Punjab Governor Gen (retd) S F Rodrigues said that as per the law and laid down principles of the constitution the notification was totally illegal, unconstitutional, arbitrary and a display of vengeance against an elected member of the august House. It is violation of Article 21 of the Constitution, according to which no one can be deprived of free and fair trial.

However in this case there seems to be a tearing hurry and malafide intention not only of the state government but as well as the staff of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha, the letter claimed. The motion to expel Capt Singh was passed in the Vidhan Sabha on September 10 and within minutes the staff under directions and pressure of the government issued the notification the same day.

" Probably the lust and malice of the rulers at the helm could not wait to follow any legal procedure", Mr Khaira stated in the letter while claiming that Secretary of the Vidhan Sabha, was not in any legal way entitled to declare an assembly seat vacant. This issue of declaring a seat vacant lies with the Election Commission of India in accordance with the provisions of the Representatives of Peoples Act.

" No seat can be declared vacant without giving any appropriate time frame of appeal to various higher courts of India", he said in the letter. Also according to Article 194, the member so found guilty of a corrupt practice must be sentenced to five years or more of imprisonment, so that the Election Commission can declare an assembly seat vacant, he added.

UNI HS MMS1853

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