20 AAP Legislators Face Disqualification: A Timeline Of Office Of Profit Case

The Election Commission recommended to President Ram Nath Kovind that 20 AAP legislators should be disqualified for holding 'office of profit' as parliamentary secretaries.

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20 AAP Legislators Face Disqualification: A Timeline Of Office Of Profit Case

'Office of profit' case: 20 AAP legislators face exit.

New Delhi:  The Election Commission today recommended to President Ram Nath Kovind that 20 Aam Aadmi Party legislators should be disqualified for holding 'office of profit' as parliamentary secretaries, sources said. Once the recommendation is approved by the President, by-elections will have to be held for the 20 assembly seats. Initially, the case was against 21 legislators, but after Rajouri Garden MLA Jarnail Singh resigned to contest against Parkash Singh Badal in the Punjab Assembly elections last year, the case now stands against 20 legislators. Party sources say that AAP will challenge the poll panel's decision in the Supreme Court. The 20 AAP legislators include prominent names - Chandni Chowk legislator Alka Lamba, Burari legislator Sanjeev Jha, Kalkaji legislator Avtar Singh, Narela legislator Sharad Kumar and Najafgarh legislator Kailash Gahlot who is also Delhi Transport Minister, among others.
 

Here's the timeline of the Office Of Profit case:


March 2015: Soon after sweeping the Delhi elections, the AAP government passed an amendment to the Delhi Members of Legislative Assembly (Removal of Disqualification) Act, 1997 to exempt the post of parliamentary secretary from the definition of office of profit with retrospective effect.

On March 13, AAP government passed an order appointing the 21 AAP legislators as parliamentary secretaries, saying they won't take remuneration and hence didn't fall under the office of profit regulations.

June 2016: Congress moved the Election Commission to seek disqualification of 21 legislators who also held the parliamentary secretary post. Leading the Congress delegation, Delhi party chief Ajay Maken said that it has been clearly stated in the NCT of Delhi Act, 1991 that if any Member of Legislative Assembly, other than the ministers, holds any office of profit in Delhi government, the Member of Legislative Assembly concerned would invite disqualification of the membership of the Assembly.

September 2016: The Delhi High Court quashed the AAP government's order appointing 21 legislators as parliamentary secretaries since it lacked the approval of the Lieutenant Governor (LG), the administrative head of Delhi.

January 2017: Jarnail Singh, AAP legislator from Rajouri Garden resigned to fight elections in Punjab, leaving 20 legislators on the post of parliament secretary.

June 2017: The Election Commission rejected pleas of the 20 legislators to drop the 'office of profit' case against them.

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October 2017: The Election Commission summoned AAP legislators for an explanation.

January 2018: The Election Commission recommends disqualification of 20 AAP legislators in the office of profit case.

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