42 MPs have lost their membership of Parliament since 1988, maximum 19 in 14th Lok Sabha
New Delhi: Rahul Gandhi’s recent disqualification from the Lok Sabha has put the spotlight on provisions of an Act that has been used since 1988 to remove 42 members from Parliament, 19 MPs in the 14th Lok Sabha over cash evasion. I have witnessed the removal. -For-query scam and cross-voting. The disqualification of these MPs has been done on various grounds such as switching political allegiance, conduct unbecoming of an MP and after being convicted by a court of law for offenses punishable with imprisonment of two years or more.
The latest round of disqualifications of Congress leader Gandhi, NCP leader Mohd Faizal PP, and BSP leader Afzal Ansari came after their convictions for more than two years in jail by courts, invoking provisions of the Representation of the People Act. The Act deals with the automatic disqualification of MPs and state MLAs if convicted in a criminal case and sentenced to two years or more.
The disqualification of Faizal, who represents Lakshadweep in the Lok Sabha, was quashed after the Kerala High Court stayed his conviction and sentence in an attempt to murder case. Gandhi has moved the Gujarat High Court seeking relief in a criminal defamation case involving the ‘Modi surname’, in which a Surat court sentenced him to two years in jail.
The first disqualification of a Lok Sabha member after the anti-defection law came into force in 1985 was that of Congress member Lalduhoma, who filed his nomination papers as a Mizo National Union candidate for the Mizoram Legislative Assembly elections. His. The Ninth Lok Sabha, when the then Janata Dal leader VP Singh formed a coalition government, saw nine members of the Lok Sabha violate the anti-defection law, which led to their disqualification.
However, it was the 14th Lok Sabha, in which 10 members were expelled from the house for unbecoming conduct as a member for accepting bribes to raise questions and nine for cross-voting during the trust vote demanded by the UPA-1 government. was thrown out. In July 2008, the Left Front withdrew its support for the civil nuclear deal with the US. In 2005, six members of the BJP, two of the BSP and one each of the Congress and the RJD were expelled from the Lok Sabha over the ‘cash for questions’ scam. A Rajya Sabha member of the BSP was also expelled from the House.
Former Additional Secretary of Lok Sabha Devendra Singh Aswal told PTI, “The Supreme Court upheld the expulsion. In the 10th Lok Sabha, when the then Prime Minister PV Narasimha Rao led the coalition government, four members were disqualified from the house under the anti-defection law.
The Rajya Sabha has also had its share of disqualifications under the anti-defection law – Mufti Mohammad Sayeed (1989), Satyapal Malik (1989), Sharad Yadav (2017) and Ali Anwar (2017). Jharkhand Mukti Morcha leader Shibu Soren and Samajwadi Party member Jaya Bachchan were disqualified from the Rajya Sabha for holding office of profit in 2001 and 2006 respectively. While Soren was the chairman of the Jharkhand Area Autonomous Council, Bachchan was the chairman of the Uttar Pradesh Film Development Council.
A disqualification petition against the then Congress President Sonia Gandhi for holding the office of profit of Chairperson of the National Advisory Council has turned infructuous after she quit as a member of the Lok Sabha. To avoid a possible political upheaval, the Parliament (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1959 was amended with retrospective effect in 2006. April 4, 1959 and similar petitions have become infructuous, Aswal, who is also a member of the Bar Council of India, said.
A Supreme Court judgment, referred to as the Lily Thomas case, clarified the legal position by making it clear that any conviction involving a sentence of two years or more would automatically disqualify an elected representative. Disqualification will result. Aswal said, “The Lok Sabha Secretariat has only to notify the vacancy by issuing a notification so that the Election Commission can start the process of bye-election.”
As a result of the decision, Rasheed Masood, a Rajya Sabha member of the Congress, was disqualified from the Upper House due to his conviction in a corruption case. RJD supremo Lalu Prasad and JD(U) member Jagdish Sharma were disqualified from the Lok Sabha after their conviction in the fodder scam.