KA rebel MLAs move SC against disqualification order

Ramesh Jarkiholi and Mahesh Kumathalli. (PTI)

Two Congress rebels Ramesh Jarkiholi and Mahesh Kumathalli on Monday moved the Supreme Court with a writ petition to quash the Karnataka Assembly Speaker's decision of July 25 to disqualify them as MLAs.

Independent MLA R Shankar also filed a separate petition to the top court to set aside the orders passed by Speaker K R Ramesh Kumar in rejecting his resignation and disqualifying him for the term of the Assembly under the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution.

The petitioners claimed that the actions of the Speaker violated their Constitutional right under Article 190 and were therefore, arbitrary, unreasonable and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution of India.

They also contended the Speaker's action was also illegal and in violation of principles of natural justice. 

"The Impugned order is not in consonance with the provisions of Rules 6 and 7 of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly (Disqualification of Members on Ground of Defection) Rules, 1986, inasmuch as, they were not given seven days' notice before the matter was taken up for hearing," they said.

Among others, they also pointed out that the Speaker in case of Umesh Jadhav demonstrated that pendency of disqualification proceedings was no bar to acceptance of resignation.

The Speaker has erred in holding that the time of seven days prescribed in disqualification rules was directory and not mandatory. He was in "hot haste to disqualify the petitioners at the behest of the ruling party", their petition stated.

They urged the court to call the records related to their resignation and disqualification proceedings and quash the orders passed by the Speaker in "mala fide manner, based on extraneous consideration and in stark contrast to the duties imposed upon him". 

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