Himachal Pradesh Independent MLAs Challenge Speaker's Resignation Delay in High Court

Independent MLAs challenge Himachal Pradesh Assembly Speaker's delay in accepting resignations. High Court hearing set for April 24th.

Three Independent MLAs in Himachal Pradesh have taken their battle to the High Court, challenging the Assembly speaker's refusal to accept their resignations. Hoshiyar Singh from Dehra, Ashish Sharma from Hamirpur, and KL Thakur from Nalagarah submitted their resignations on March 22, 2024, and promptly joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) the following day in New Delhi.

Despite their resignations, all three MLAs were summoned by Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathania to appear before him on Wednesday. Expressing their frustration, MLA Hoshiyar Singh stated, "Today we have to file a reply before the speaker, and our case was listed in the High Court today as our case was delayed we had submitted our resignations on March 22nd and it should have been accepted on the same day."

Singh continued, highlighting their plea in the High Court, citing previous Supreme Court verdicts on similar cases in Karnataka and Mizoram. He criticized the delay in the speaker's decision, stressing that it goes against the Constitution. "The decision has to be given by the speaker in one day, they have delayed it and this is not good for the Constitution," Singh remarked. He further expressed suspicion regarding the delay's motive, suggesting it could be to postpone early elections. Singh questioned the swift disqualification of Congress legislators compared to the prolonged process for their resignations.

The MLAs' case is scheduled for April 24th in the Himachal Pradesh High Court. Alongside six Congress MLAs who were later disqualified, these three Independent MLAs played a pivotal role in the Rajya Sabha polls in February. They supported BJP nominee Harsh Mahajan, resulting in the defeat of Congress candidate Abhishek Manu Singhvi.