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Himachal's 6 Congress rebel MLAs withdrew petition from SC challenging disqualification

Sudhir Sharma, Ravi Thakur, Rajinder Rana, Inder Dutt Lakhanpal, Chetanya Sharma, and Devinder Kumar Bhutto were disqualified on February 29, for defying a Congress whip to be present in the House and voting in favour of the Himachal Pradesh government during the cut motion and budget. 

News Arena Network - Shimla - UPDATED: May 10, 2024, 08:10 AM - 2 mins read

Supreme Court of India.

Himachal's 6 Congress rebel MLAs withdrew petition from SC challenging disqualification

Supreme Court of India.


Six former Congress rebel MLAs who now are contesting from BJP ticket in Himachal assembly by-polls withdrew their petition from the Supreme Court on Friday, against the state Assembly Speaker's decision to disqualify them from the House. 

 

A bench of justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta was told by senior advocate Abhinav Mukherjee, appearing for the former MLAs, that they want to withdraw the petition. 

 

"We knew this was going to happen due to the elections," the bench observed while allowing them to withdraw their plea. 

 

The 6 former MLAs are currently running as BJP candidates in the assembly by-polls, which became necessary following their disqualification.

 

Sudhir Sharma, Ravi Thakur, Rajinder Rana, Inder Dutt Lakhanpal, Chetanya Sharma, and Devinder Kumar Bhutto were disqualified on February 29, for defying a Congress whip to be present in the House and voting in favour of the Himachal Pradesh government during the cut motion and budget. 

 

According to the notification issued on March 16 by the poll panel, assembly byelections are scheduled to be held in the Dharamshala, Sujanpur, Lahaul and Spiti, Barsar, Gagret, and Kutlehar constituencies that fell vacant after the disqualification of the six lawmakers on June 1 along with polling for the four Lok Sabha seats in the state. 

 

On March 18, the top court refused to stay the Himachal Pradesh Assembly Speaker's order disqualifying the former MLAs who had cross-voted in the Rajya Sabha polls in the state. 

 

It had issued notice to the office of Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathania and sought its response within four weeks on a plea by the former MLAs. 

 

The top court had said pending adjudication of their plea, these disqualified MLAs would not be allowed to vote or participate in the proceedings of the assembly. 

 

Following the disqualification of the rebels, the effective strength of the House has gone down to 62 from 68, while the number of Congress MLAs has shrunk to 34 from 40. 

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