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Cash for query: HC notice to Parliament, Govt

January 09, 2006 20:34 IST

The Delhi High Court on Monday issued notices to the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha Secretariats, Election Commission and the Centre on petitions by eight of the 11 expelled parliamentarians challenging their expulsion in the wake of the cash for query scam.

The court, however, refused to stay the expulsion of MPs and posted the matter for hearing on February 16.

Complete Coverage: Cash on Questions

Notwithstanding Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee's assertion that courts do not have jurisdiction in the matter, a division bench of Justice Vijender Jain and Justice Rekha Sharma asked the respondents to file their replies in two weeks.

The court also ignored the suggestion of Additional Solicitor General P P Malhotra that it should not hear the case as the Supreme Court will on January 16 hear the petition filed by one of the expelled MPs - Rajaram Pal of the Bahujan Samaj Party.

The bench sought to know under what provision of law had the MPs been expelled and issued notices after senior counsel P N Lekhi submitted on behalf of six of the expelled MPs that there was no such provision in the Constitution.

Lawyers representing the Rajya Sabha, Election Commission and the Centre have already accepted the notices. The Lok Sabha Secretariat will be formally served with the notices asking why the petitions not be admitted for hearing.

The MPs who moved the High Court are Lok Sabha members Suresh Chandel, Pradip Gandhi, Yashwant Giridhar Mahajan, Anna Saheb M K Patil, Chandrapratap Singh (all Bharatiya Janata Party), Manoj Kumar (Rashtriya Janata Dal) and Ram Sevak Singh (Congress) besides the lone Rajya Sabha member Chhatrapal Singh Lodha from the BJP.

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