In a major embarrassment for the Aam Admi Party the President of India has withheld the Delhi government's dual office bill. With this bill being withheld 21 Aam Admin Party MLAs run the risk of losing their membership on the dual office profit issue. This however would not affect the Delhi government as the AAP has 67 MLAs in the 70 member house.
The MLAs are those who were appointed parliamentary secretaries by the AAP government in Delhi on March 14 2015. A BJP leader had filed a complaint with the president of India calling for the disqualification of 21 parliamentary secretaries, on the grounds that they were holding dual offices of profit.
Arvind Kejriwal in a bid to shield the MLAs from being disqualified had passed a bill in the state assembly exempting parliamentary secretaries from the ambit of the dual office of profit law, with retrospective affect. The bill was then sent to the Lieutenant Governor and the centre for its approval.
The AAP says that this is being orchestrated by the BJP. With this bill being with scrapped, there is some amount of trouble for the AAP. However this would not affect the government as the party has 67 MLAs in the 70 member assembly.
Constitutional expert Subhash Kashyap says a legislator who holds an office or post under the government - even if no renumeration is received but enjoys perks would be deemed to be holding an office of profit. He further pointed out that office of profit means is a broad term and is applicable to parliamentary secretaries. Only receiving remuneration and cash is not office of profit, it also would mean giving favours in kind or able to influence decisions," the expert also states.