New Delhi: The Congress on Friday questioned Rahul Gandhi’s disqualification from the Lok Sabha, and said that only President has the powers to do so.
Congress MP Manish Tewari said that under the Constitution of India only the President has the power to disqualify an MP.
“Under COI powers to disqualify an MP lie with the President -Article 103 if disqualification is incurred under Article 102 (1) (e). In Re Lok Prahari VS ECI (2018) 18 SCC 114 SC records EC’s contentions qua Lily Thomas but records no finding that disqualification is automatic.”
After getting disqualified from the Lok Sabha, Rahul Gandhi’s fate in electoral politics now depends only upon the legal relief that he can get from the courts as the Election Commission may likely declare his seat vacant and announce elections.
The Congress has raised the issue that only the President can disqualify an MP, but legal experts say that the conviction itself sets the disqualification in motion.
Majeed Memon, a former MP and a legal expert said, “If Rahul’s sentence is suspended post-conviction by an appeal in court under section 389 of the Criminal Procedure Code, his disqualification from the Lok Sabha can be deferred.”
P. Chidambaram, former Union Minister said, “Judgement on 23 March, disqualification on 24 March.
“The speed with which the system moved is astonishing, No time is spent on reflection, understanding or allowing time for legal review, Obviously, there are no voices of moderation in the BJP party or government, The net result is parliamentary democracy has suffered another cruel blow.”
Rahul after losing the membership will lose his official accommodation in the Lutyens area and will have to vacate the 12, Tughlak Lane Bungalow allotted to him.
Congress spokesperson Jairam Ramesh said, “We will fight this battle both legally and politically. We will not be intimidated or silenced. Instead of a JPC into the PM-linked Adani Maha Mega Scam, Rahul Gandhi stands disqualified. Indian Democracy Om Shanti.”
The Lok Sabha Secretariat in its notification said, “Consequent upon his conviction by the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate, Surat…, Rahul Gandhi, Lok Sabha MP representing Wayanad Parliamentary constituency of Kerala, stands disqualified from the membership of the lower house from the date of his conviction…”
This order was issued by the Lok Sabha Secretariat on Friday and was signed by Secretary General, Lok Sabha.
Surat district court in Gujarat on Thursday convicted Congress MP Rahul Gandhi in a criminal defamation case against him over his alleged ‘Modi surname’ remark in 2019.