38.6c New Delhi, India, Friday, June 21, 2024
Executive

'Declare automatic disqualification as ultra vires the Constitution,' plea filed in SC after Rahul Gandhi's case

By LawStreet News Network      25 March, 2023 08:38 PM      0 Comments
'Declare automatic disqualification as ultra vires the Constitution,' plea filed in SC after Rahul Gandhi's case

NEW DELHI: With the disqualification of Rahul Gandhi as an MP, a social worker from Kerala has approached the Supreme Court, challenging validity of provisions of the Representation of People Act, mandating "blanket and automatic" disqualification of legislators upon conviction and sentence, without considering the nature, gravity, and seriousness of the offences.

Aabha Muralidharan, from Malappuram sought a direction that there did not exist any automatic disqualification under Section 8 (3) of the Representation of People Act, 1951.

The plea filed through advocate Deepak Prakash referred to disqualification of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi as the MP from Wayanad on Friday by the Lok Sabha secretariat. The action came a day after his his conviction and sentence of two years by a Surat court for his remarks as to 'why all thieves had Modi surname' in a rally in 2019 in Kolar.

"The said conviction of Rahul Gandhi has been challenged, however, in light of the operations of the present disqualification rules, as per the 1951 Act, the stage of appeal, the nature of offences, the gravity of the offences and the impact of the same over the society and nation are not being considered, and in a blanket manner, an automatic disqualification is ordered," it said.

The plea contended that automatic disqualification under Section 8 (3) should be declared as ultra vires of the Constitution, for being arbitrary, illegal and violative of fundamental right to equality.

It asked the court to issue orders that the mandate of Section 499 (defamation) of IPC or any other offence prescribing maximum punishment of two years will not automatically disqualify any sitting member of any legislative body for it violated the freedom of speech and expression of an elected representative.

The factors  such as nature, gravity, role, moral turpitude and the role of the accused, ought to be examined while considering disqualification under Chapter III of the 1951 Act, it said.

"The grounds for disqualification ought to be specific with the nature of offences as specified under the Code for Criminal Procedure and not in a blanket form, as is currently in force under Section 8(3) of the RP Act," it said.

The writ petition further contended the interpretation provided by the Supreme Court in Lily Thomas case (2013) required re-examination, to the effect of adjudicating the provisions of disqualification under Chapter III of the 1951 Act, vis a vis, the classification of offences in the schedule and the gravity of offences, which can be petty, serious or heinous in nature.

"The operations of Lily Thomas case are being blatantly misused for wreaking personal vengeance against the political parties," it claimed.

The petitioner sought a direction that criminal defamation must be excepted from the sweep of the judgement in Lily Thomas case, otherwise it would have a chilling effect on the right of representation of the citizens.

"The right under Article 19 (1) (a) (freedom of speech and expression) enjoyed by the Member of the Parliament is an extension of the voice of millions of his supporters. If the offence under Section 499 and 500 of the IPC, which just technically has a maximum punishment of two years is not removed singularly from the sweeping effect of the judgement in Lily Thomas, it will have a chilling effect on the right of representation of the citizens," it said.



Share this article:

User Avatar
About:


Leave a feedback about this
TRENDING NEWS

gujarat-hc-judge-to-watch-maharaj-to-decide-plea-for-stay-on-release
Trending Judiciary
Gujarat HC judge to watch 'Maharaj', to decide plea for stay on release

Gujarat HC to watch Junaid Khan’s movie “Maharaj” to decide on release stay plea. The film’s release was postponed due to concerns from Pushtimarg sect devotees.

20 June, 2024 12:26 PM
sc-orders-cbi-probe-into-neet-ug-irregularities-stays-hc-proceedings-while-refusing-to-stay-counselling
Trending Judiciary
SC orders CBI probe into NEET UG irregularities, stays HC proceedings while refusing to stay counselling

The Supreme Court suspends NEET UG 2024 HC proceedings, refuses to stay counselling; issues notice for CBI probe into exam irregularities.

20 June, 2024 01:43 PM

TOP STORIES

india-tv-journalist-rajat-sharma-sues-congress-leaders-for-defamation
Trending Judiciary
India TV journalist Rajat Sharma sues Congress leaders for defamation

Veteran journalist Rajat Sharma sues Congress leaders for defamation in Delhi HC, alleging tweets damaged his 40-year reputation. Justice Krishna reserves order.

15 June, 2024 12:09 PM
miscreants-scribble-ram-on-goat-headed-for-bakri-eid-sacrifice-gau-gyan-foundation-demands-action
Trending Crime, Police And Law
Miscreants scribble "Ram" on goat headed for Bakri Eid sacrifice, 'Gau Gyan Foundation' demands action

Miscreants scribble 'Ram' on goat headed for Bakri Eid sacrifice in Mumbai, animal welfare organization Gau Gyan Foundation demands police action for hurting religious sentiments.

15 June, 2024 05:49 PM
offence-committed-outside-india-by-indian-citizen-requires-centres-sanction-us-188-crpc-for-trial-in-india-kerala-hc
Trending Judiciary
Offence committed outside India by Indian citizen requires centre’s sanction U/S 188 CrPC for trial in India: Kerala HC [Read Order]

Kerala HC quashes proceedings against a husband for cruelty committed in Australia, citing lack of Centre’s sanction under Section 188 CrPC for trial in India.

15 June, 2024 06:06 PM
women-including-housewife-approach-ncw-against-controversial-ips-officer-gyaneshwar-singh
Trending Crime, Police And Law
Women, including housewife, approach NCW against controversial IPS officer Gyaneshwar Singh

Two women approach NCW against controversial IPS officer Gyaneshwar Singh, citing harassment for tweets based on news reports about his involvement in high-profile cases.

17 June, 2024 03:10 PM

ADVERTISEMENT


Join Group

Signup for Our Newsletter

Get Exclusive access to members only content by email