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Suspended BJP MLAs: All further proceedings must be kept in abeyance, Delhi HC to Privileges Committee

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Suspended BJP MLAs: All further proceedings must be kept in abeyance, Delhi HC to Privileges Committee

New Delhi, Feb 22 (Ajit Weekly News) The Delhi High Court on Thursday asked the Delhi Assembly’s Privileges Committee to hold its proceedings against seven BJP MLAs who have been suspended for interrupting Lt Governor V.K. Saxena’s address at the start of the Budget session.

The seven BJP MLAs – Mohan Singh Bisht, Ajay Mahawar, O.P. Sharma, Abhay Verma, Anil Vajpayi, Jitender Mahajan, and Vijender Gupta – moved the high court on Monday challenging their suspension for the remainder of the Budget session of the Assembly, saying it was maliciously engineered to disable the opposition members from participating in the discussions.

On Wednesday, Justice Subramonium Prasad had asked the MLAs to meet the Assembly Speaker after Lt Governor accepted their apology.

Senior advocate Jayant Mehta, appearing for the MLAs, informed the court on Thursday that they met the Speaker on Wednesday, and they had to give a response to the Privileges Committee by 1 p.m., and at 2.30 p.m. it will proceed.

Since the court is hearing the matter on merit, the judge said that the Committee should not continue with the proceedings.

“Since I have started hearing today, the Privileges Committee should not continue. All further proceedings must be kept in abeyance,” he said orally to senior counsel appearing for the Assembly.

The court observed that their suspension was resulting in their constituencies going unrepresented in the House. It again adjourned the matter for hearing next on Friday.

The members were suspended for allegedly interrupting the Lt Governor’s address, highlighting AAP government achievements on February 15. MLAs have expressed concerns about their continued suspension and contested recent political comments and messages, indicating a potentially contentious environment.

Mehta had, on Monday, argued that the suspension is unconstitutional and contrary to rules, affecting their right to participate in proceedings. “This was maliciously engineered to disable the opposition members to participate in the discussions on crucial businesses that were to be discussed and to also exclude them, albeit unconstitutionally, from participating in the budget session of the House,” their plea said, adding the move was grossly unconstitutional and even contrary to Rules of Business of the House.

Mehta had said that the motion to suspend them was excessive, advocating a maximum three-day suspension instead of an indefinite one.

AAP MLA Dilip Pandey initiated the resolution for suspension in the House, which Speaker Ram Niwas Goel accepted. The matter was also forwarded to the Privileges Committee. The suspended MLAs, except Leader of Opposition Ramvir Singh Bidhuri, were barred from Assembly proceedings until the committee’s report was received.

–Ajit Weekly News

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