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02 November, 2010

BJP opts for nationwide debate to amend Anti-Defection Law

The Pioneer
November 02, 2010, Chandigarh: Former MP and in-charge of the BJP’s Legal Cell Satya Pal Jain on Monday said that his party would conduct seminars and workshops across the country, seeking appropriate amendments in the Anti-Defection Law to strengthen democracy in the country.
“After witnessing the political turmoil in Karnataka concerning the Anti-Defection Law, the BJP is ready to clamor for amendments in the Anti-Defection Law,” said the city’s former MP Satya Pal Jain on Monday.
Lashing out at the Congress and Janata Dal Secular (JD-S), he said that the Congress has misused the Government machinery in Karnataka to form the Government in the State but they failed in doing so and the BJP remains the ruling party.
“A conspiracy and serious attempt was made by the Congress to topple the BJP-led State Government in Karnataka,” he added.
Jain, counsel for the BJP Government in the case concerning MLA’s disqualification in Karnataka said, “BJP legal and legislative cell has decided to organise symposiums to talk about the Anti-Defection Law and urgent need to amend the law. The party will invite senior lawyers, Speakers, Deputy Speakers and Governors from various States. We also intend to call for an all party meeting to discuss the significant issue.”
Other experts will also be invited to form an opinion to strengthen and amend the current Anti-Defection Law. The party will also spread awareness about this in the general public.
Explicating about the immediate demands of the party, he said that the Anti-Defection Law should also be applicable to the elections of the civic body. Wherever, the elections of the Municipal Corporation or Municipal Council are held, the law should be applicable to the members to ensure impartiality in the system.
... He said, “Anti-Defection Law is not applicable to the independents and there is also a need to include the independent legislators under the law.”
Citing the example of Haryana Assembly where the decision of disqualification of five legislators is pending with the Speaker for over one year, Jain said, “The Law should also include the clause of time period given to the Speaker to decide on the disqualification of the legislators, who are found violating the law.
“A time-limit of about 3-4 weeks should be fixed for the Speaker to give his decision in the cases concerning the disqualification of legislators under the law,” he added. Jain further said the party also demands the disqualification of such legislators for about six years.