TPCC delegation meets CEC over MLAs’ expulsion

Thursday, March 15th, 2018, 10:00:05 PM IST

A delegation of the Telangana Pradesh Congress Committee (TPCC) met Chief Election Commissioner O.P. Rawat in New Delhi on Thursday against the expulsion of two Congress MLAs Komatireddy Venkatreddy and S.A. Sampath Kumar.

The delegation, led by TPCC Election Commission Coordination Committee chairman Marri Sashidhar Reddy, comprised of MP Nandi Yellaiah, ex-MP V. Hanumanth Rao, G. Niranjan, A. Shyam Mohan, Vinod Reddy and Rahul.

The Congress leaders alleged that the two Congress MLAs were expelled from Telangana Legislative Assembly in an ‘arbitrary manner’. “Both of them were proposers for the Congress candidate for Rajya Sabha election. Gazette notification was issued at lightning speed and sent the same to EC so that bye-elections for these two seats could be notified along with the Karnataka Assembly elections. It was a conspiracy to deny them their right to vote,” they alleged.

Further, they alleged that the process followed by Speaker S. Madhusudan Chary was itself flawed, illegal, unconstitutional and without jurisdiction. They said that the Conduct of Business Rules of the Telangana Assembly were applicable by the Speaker against a member only when the House is in session and business is being undertaken in the House presided over by the Speaker. “We reiterate that the reason cited for expulsion of the members on 13.03.2018 is that they resorted to some disturbances and incidents during the Governor’s Address to the Joint Session of the Telangana Legislature on 12.03.2018. The President of India/ a state Governor have a constitutional obligation of addressing the members of both the Houses of the state legislature in a Joint Session and does not come under the business of the House. The Governor of Telangana discharged this obligation to address the Joint Session on 12.03.2018. The House cannot be said to have met until the preliminaries have been gone through. It has to be presumed that no transaction of business takes place to apply the Conduct of Business Rules until the preliminaries have been gone through. Applying Business Rules and moving a resolution for suspending / expelling a member for his conduct when the House is not transacting business is wholly unconditional. Therefore, the expulsion of both the MLAs is illegal, without jurisdiction and unconstitutional,” they said in their petition.

The Congress leaders urged the Election Commission to wait before taking any action on the Gazette Notification of TS Government till the verdict of the Hyderabad High Court on a Writ Petition filed today. They informed that the Election Commission too has been made a party in the case.