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LG accepts apology, HC asks suspended BJP MLAs to meet Speaker

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked the seven BJP MLAs, suspended from the Delhi assembly for repeatedly interrupting Lieutenant Governors V K Saxenas address at the start of the Budget session, to meet the speaker after it was informed that the LG has accepted their apology. The counsel for the MLAs told the court they would meet Speaker Ram Niwas Goel during the day.

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Delhi Lieutenant Governor V K Saxena
Delhi Lieutenant Governor V K Saxena | Image :ANI

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked the seven BJP MLAs, suspended from the Delhi assembly for repeatedly interrupting Lieutenant Governor’s V K Saxena’s address at the start of the Budget session, to meet the speaker after it was informed that the LG has accepted their apology.

The counsel for the MLAs told the court they would meet Speaker Ram Niwas Goel during the day.

When Justice Subramonium Prasad asked the MLAs to meet the speaker, their counsel said, “As legislators, I don’t think we should have any difficulty in meeting the speaker. However, what we are concerned and aggrieved about is our continued suspension.” Senior advocate Jayant Mehta, appearing for the MLAs, said they have submitted a letter of apology to Saxena who accepted it. He said a letter was also sent to Speaker Goel.

“Though we don’t think we did anything wrong, it was meant as an apology,” he submitted.

The high court was hearing the pleas by seven BJP MLAs — Mohan Singh Bisht, Ajay Mahawar, O P Sharma, Abhay Verma, Anil Bajpai, Jitender Mahajan and Vijender Gupta — challenging their indefinite suspension from the assembly.

During the hearing, the MLAs’ counsel said, “Although the court was told that it (their suspension) wasn’t political, we felt otherwise. We wrote a letter to the LG. The LG accepted it. However, there are two developments. Political comments are being made… political messages are floating…” Initially, Mehta said since the legislators have been barred, they cannot go inside the assembly premises.

Senior advocate Sudhir Nandrajog, representing the legislative assembly, however, said the suspended MLAs can go and meet the speaker in his office but they cannot enter the legislative chamber.

As the lawyer suggested that the MLAs should go and meet the speaker with a letter of apology, the judge said he will not say anything on the nature of the proposed meeting but the legislators should go and meet Goel.

”I am not interested in the nature of the meeting. I am not interested in what transpires in the meeting. I am only saying go and meet the speaker,” the judge said, adding the court is not a political platform.

The court said it deals with law, and if an issue can be resolved outside the court, an attempt should be made.

The court listed the matter for further hearing on Thursday.

It had on Tuesday asked the seven BJP MLAs if they were willing to apologise to the LG.

The court had asked the senior counsel appearing for the suspended legislators to take instructions on this aspect after the senior lawyer for the assembly said a similar approach was adopted in the Supreme Court in the case of AAP Rajya Sabha MP Raghav Chadha.

The MLAs’ counsel had said there was no difficulty in apologising to the LG.

The MLAs had contended their suspension till the conclusion of the proceedings before the privileges committee was in violation of the applicable rules.

The BJP lawmakers had interrupted Saxena multiple times during his address on February 15 as he highlighted the achievements of the AAP government, while they attacked the Arvind Kejriwal government on a range of issues.

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