The Delhi High Court today has refused to stay order on the disqualification of 20 MLAs of the Aam Aadmi Party after a petition was filed by 8 of the disqualified MLAs challenging the Center’s notification on the issue. However, the Court has restrained the Election Commission from announcing the dates of by-polls till January 29, the next date of the hearing.
Senior Advocate K V Vishwanathan, appearing for 5 of the MLAs requested the Court to at least withhold the by-elections even if it did not stay the Center’s notification. The 20 AAP MLAs were disqualified after Advocate Prashant Patel had filed a PIL against the MLAs for holding the office of profit of parliamentary secretaries.
The Aam Aadmi Party may have more trouble coming its way as 17 more of MLAs could face disqualification for holding offices of profit. But, as has become the norm, Arvind Kejriwal’s party has alleged political vendetta against them by the BJP. Manish Sisodia, Deputy Chief Minister of Delhi, in an open letter addressed to the people of Delhi, called the disqualification “BJP’s dirty politics.”
However, in resigned acceptance perhaps, Manish Sisodia has stated that although he doesn’t believe a by-election will be “imposed” on Delhi, the Aam Aadmi Party is always “election ready” and the BJP will “find it difficult to go out and ask for votes.”