Aam Aadmi Party on Monday decided to withdraw its petition in the Delhi High Court, filed on Friday against the Election Commission’s recommendations to disqualify its 20 MLAs for holding offices of profits.
Delhi High Court was to hear the case related to the disqualification of 20 AAP MLAs. AAP sources said that the party will file a fresh petition against the President’s nod to the EC’s recommendations. It had sought time with President Ram Nath Kovind, but he refused to entertain the request.
The case is scheduled for hearing at 4 PM today. The recommendations to disqualify them were made on Friday, but the President’s office gave its nod on Sunday afternoon, as reported by Janta Ka Reporter.
If AAP fails to get a relief from the High Court, the party will move the Supreme Court hoping that the matter lasts until the end of the present term of the Delhi Assembly. One senior AAP leader said that she was confident that the top court will see a rationale in their arguments that the Centre’s Narendra Modi government had singled out the Delhi government for political vendetta.
Many AAP leaders have already alleged that the appointment of parliamentary secretaries have been declared null and void by High Court in several states including Haryana, Goa and Rajasthan, but the legislators concerned were never disqualified.
Rifat Jawaid on Office of Profit controversy
Posted by Janta Ka Reporter on Saturday, 20 January 2018
AAP is also preparing for the by-elections, if they fail to get reprieve from the courts. One source said that Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday reassured his 20 MLAs asking them not to be nervous when the former met them at his official residence.
AAP is hoping that aside from the sympathy vote, the recent sealing drive of shops and offices by the BJP-run civic bodies will also hurt the saffron party’s electoral prospects.
Kejriwal’s comments on Sunday gave an idea that he had prepared himself to face a mini-election in Delhi. Kejriwal on Sunday said that God was with his party. Reacting to the President Ram Nath Kovind’s approval to the Election Commission’s recommendation of disqualifying 20 AAP MLAs.
Kejriwal tweeted, “God had given us 67 assembly seats (in February 2015 polls) for a reason. God has been with Aam Aadmi Party at every step of ours. Otherwise, what was our worth? Just stick to the path of honesty.”
The President had given his approval to the EC’s recommendations a day after Kejriwal’s deputy, Manish Sisodia, told reporters that he had sought time with the President to share their grievances on the issue.
Reacting to the development, Delhi government’s minister, Gopal Rai said on Sunday, “We had hoped to go to the President asking him to give us a chance to present ourselves. Now we received this news. AAP will knock the doors of the High Court and even the Supreme Court if the need be.”
Meanwhile Congress’s Delhi unit chief, Ajay Maken, accused both the BJP and the EC of helping AAP. Maken told reporters in Delhi that the delay in taking action was deliberate and only to help AAP secure three Rajya Sabha seats.
The AAP had approached the High Court on Friday with the judge adjourning the matter for hearing on Monday. On Friday, the EC lawyer had reportedly expressed ignorance on any recommendations made by the poll body. The EC had on Friday made its recommendations disqualifying the 20 AAP MLAs in office for profit case.