ITANAGAR, Oct 15 - Arunachal Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) has on Friday reportedly filed a petition with Speaker, challenging the recent merger of 43 Congress MLAs with People�s Party of Arunachal (PPA), describing the same as �unconstitutional and violation of Anti-Defection Law�.
Left with only three members, including former Chief Minister Nabam Tuki, in the 60-member House after the wholesale defection to the regional party PPA, the Congress pleaded for disqualification of those MLAs as member of Arunachal Pradesh Assembly under Article 191(2) (read with clause 2 of Tenth Schedule of the Constitution of India and Members of Arunachal Pradesh Assembly (disqualification on ground of defection) Rules, 1987/2003 for �voluntarily� giving up the membership of their original political party Indian National Congress and joining PPA.
�Although a notification was issued by the Assembly showing these MLAs as PPA MLAs but no separate order for merger has been issued,� it claimed.
�The Speaker did not recognise the merger and no order was passed permitting merger of the 43 INC MLAs with PPA. However, these 43 INC members have voluntary joined PPA and are holding various positions and other offices without any legal sanction, authority and competence,� the APCC said in a release here.
�The INC is the original political party of 43 MLAs and admittedly there is no merger of INC with PPA, but the 43 MLAs have joined PPA voluntarily without giving up the membership of INC.�
It has, therefore, pleaded before the Speaker that its petition may be decided expeditiously in the larger interest of the State preferably within three weeks; and that �the respondents may be declared disqualified from being a member of the Assembly in terms of Article 191 (2) of the Constitution of India and Clause 2 (1) (a) of the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution of India and the Assembly seat of the corresponding Assembly Constituency be declared vacant.
�Pending such decision in the matter, direction may kindly be issued to the respondents that none of the Council of Minister, Parliamentary Secretary and other holders of position shall not act or function in their respective capacity and further restrain the respondents from acting in any manner in discharge of functions as Minister, Parliamentary Secretary or any other position,� the APCC pleaded.