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HC reserves judgment in Amarinder's case

September 12, 2008 19:14 IST

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The Punjab and Haryana high court on Friday reserved its judgment on a petition filed by former chief minister Amarinder Singh seeking a stay on his expulsion from the assembly after being indicted in a graft case by a House committee.

During the hearing lasting four hours, the Congress leader's counsel said that the case, relating to a land deal in Amritsar [Images] in which Singh had been indicted by the committee, is sub-judice as the land exemption had already been challenged in the high court.

"There are three different petitions pending against the builder so the matter is sub judice and the House committee cannot probe it," they claimed.

However, the division bench comprising Justices Adarsh Kumar Goel and Ajay Tewari asked the counsel to elaborate on their contention with regard to the jurisdiction of the assembly.

"In case it is beyond jurisdiction and unconstitutional, then the court can intervene," the bench said, asking the counsel to prove that "the case is beyond the jurisdiction of the Vidhan Sabha".

"You can't sum up the powers of Vidhan Sabha," the bench observed. "In a democratic set up everyone and anyone is responsible to the public," the bench said, adding that "the public had the right to know everything and anything and the Vidhan Sabha can discuss everything and anything."

The former chief minister had moved the court on Thursday challenging the assembly's resolution of September 10 to strip him of his membership and declaring the Patiala assembly seat vacant. The state vigilance bureau, on the direction of the committee, on Thursday registered a case against the Congress leader.

Singh's lawyer contended that the decision against his client was against the principle of natural justice.

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