The Delhi High Court refused to grant interim relief to 20 Aam Aadmi Party legislators, whose names were recommended by the Election Commission to the President for disqualification for allegedly holding offices of profit, on Friday.
In a massive blow to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, the Election Commission on Friday has recommended to the President to disqualify 20 legislators of Aam Aadmi Party for holding offices of profit as parliamentary secretaries.
The Election Commission's recommendation to disqualify the legislators may lead to the AAP’s removal from the Delhi Assembly.
“The recommendation on the 20 legislators is subjudice,” the EC said and denied to comment on what the panel body conveyed to President Ram Nath Kovind.
News Nation has learned that in the present case, Election Commission has recommended to disqualify 21 MLAs.
“It is a recommendation made without hearing the arguments of MLAs on the false allegation of office of profit,” said Nagendar Sharma, media advisor to chief minister Arvind Kejriwal.
The petition before the EC was filed by Prashant Patel against 21 MLAs who were appointed as parliamentary secretaries by the Arvind Kejriwal led AAP government in Delhi.
According to political pundits, once the President approves the recommendation, by-elections for 20 seats will be held for 20 assembly seats. The ruling AAP has 65 seats in the 70-member Delhi Assembly.
“AAP’s number will come down to 45 seats if 20 legislators are disqualified. Yet, there is no worry for Arvind Kejriwal as he will still have 10 seats more than the required numbers to form a government,” he added.
According to AAP leaders, they will challenge the Election Commission decision in the Supreme Court.
AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal tweeted that when you are honest truth will prevail. He also wrote, "God is with you when you walk on the path of honesty. We have always worked for the society."
AAP will challenge the poll panel's decision in the Supreme Court, party sources said.
AAP spokesperson Raghav Chadha soon after the EC recommendation tweeted, “EC hasn't even heard the OoP matter on merits and now makes ill-founded recommendations without giving AAP MLAs an opportunity of being heard. Blatant violation of principles of natural justice. This is taking vendetta to next level.”