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Fate of 7 defected Congress MLAs uncertain; HC lists hearing on June 5

IT News

Imphal, June 3:

Manipur High Court has listed the hearing of the case in connection with the plea for disqualification of the 7(seven) Congress MLAs day after tomorrow, i.e. on June 5, 2020.

“After having heard the learned counsels appearing for the parties, this court is of the view that the applications can be listed day after tomorrow i.e. on 05-06-2020 for disposal so that the counsels appearing for the respondents will have the opportunity to go through them. If the respondents wish to file any objection, it can be done so by Thursday, i.e., 04-06-2020”, an order by the bench of Justice Singh of Manipur High Court said today. 

Senior advocate Kapil Sibal appeared for the applicants while Senior Advocates H.S. Paonam and Chittaranjan appeared for the respondents.

It may be mentioned that the Supreme Court of India had directed the Tribunal of the Speaker of Manipur Legislative Assembly to dispose the case for disqualification of the 7 Congress MLAs who had defected and joined the BJP (unofficially). However, as the case remain pending at the Speaker’s Tribunal and following the election notification of the lone Rajya Sabha seat , the Congress party filed 7 (seven) different miscellaneous  case to the Manipur High Court yesterday with prayer for either a directive to dispose the disqualification case or to prevent the 7 defected MLAs from entering the state Assembly complex.

The Election Commission of India has notified the Rajya Sabha Election for Manipur on June 19. Three candidates – one each from BJP, Congress and NPF had filed nomination for the seat. However, the NPF candidate withdrew its candidature leaving a straight fight for the Congress Candidate T. Mangibabu and BJP Candidate Leishemba Sanajaoba.

Earlier on May 28, 2020, the Speaker Tribunal of Manipur Legislative Assembly had disqualified MLA Thounoajam Shyamkumar Singh who had defected from Congress Party and joined the BJP.

The Speaker’s decision to disqualify Shyamkumar came after the Supreme Court had, on January 21, expressed its strong disapproval to the delay by the Speaker in deciding the disqualification petitions filed by Congress MLAs. The top court had eventually passed an order on March 18, restraining Shyamkumar from entering the state assembly and also directing that he shall cease to be a minister in the BJP government. Shyamkumar was a minister of Town Planning, Forest and Environment. Shyamkumar had resigned from the house on March 26 after the Supreme Court order.

On March 18, 2020, the Supreme Court had barred Shyamkumar from entering the Legislative Assembly, and ruled that he would cease to be a minister immediately. The order was passed after the top court noted that despite its direction to the Manipur Speaker in January this year to decide on the disqualification petitions pending against Singh within four weeks, no such decision had been taken.

Rinku Khumukcham

Rinku Khumukcham, Editor of Imphal Times has more than 15+ years in the field of Journalism. A seasoned editor, was a former editor of ISTV News. He resides in Keishamthong Elangbam Leikai, with his wife and parents. Rinku can be contacted at [email protected] 

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