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Reinstatement of the 20 Disqualified AAP MLAs

Reinstatement of the 20 Disqualified AAP MLAs

"Now that their offices will open again, people will be able to reach out to them with their concerns", a senior AAP functionary said.

AAP said the EC's decision to disqualify 20 of its MLAs was a serious attempt to dislodge an elected government and demanded that the election commissioners either "resign" or "apologise" for it. In September 2016, the Delhi High Court had ruled against their appointment as parliamentary secretaries, after hearing their pleas on a daily basis since 7 February. Section 15 of the Government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi Act mandates disqualification for membership. The Delhi High Court, on that date, refused to pass any interim order of protection to those MLAs.

Mukherjee referred the complaint to the Election Commission.

Party leader Ashutosh said that the EC's decision to disqualify AAP MLAs was not only constitutionally invalid but also exposed how low the authority could stoop.

The Court in its judgment passed the writ of certiorari and set aside the order for disqualification.

The petition filed by AAP had added: "It is also that even a temporary government employer can not be removed on the grounds of misconduct without holding a full-fledged inquiry".

AAP spokesperson Saurabh Bharadwaj said, "The principles of natural justice hold that a person against whom an accusation is made should have a chance to explain his or her stand".

"We will fight it out in the Election Commission again as these 20 MLAs have enjoyed perks".

On January 21, President Ram Nath Kovind approved the disqualification of the MLAs, who were appointed as parliamentary secretaries by the Arvind Kejriwal-led government, after the Election Commission of India on January 19 had recommended for the same.

The court said the poll panel's recommendation was "vitiated" and "bad in law".

As per the reports, the High Court said that the reasons behind quashing the order of January 19th are the violation of oral hearing norms by the Commission and failure to communicate that OP Rawat after recusing had rejoined proceedings.

A single-judge bench of the high court had on 24 January directed the EC to maintain status quo on the disqualifications by withholding announcement of bypoll dates for the Delhi assembly seats that would fall vacant as a result.