Speaker Nadendla Manohar said these MLAs, all of whom known to be loyal to YSR Congress, stood disqualified from the 13 Legislative Assembly for violating their party whips.
Fifteen MLAs of the Congress and the Telugu Desam, all of whom known to be loyal to YSR Congress, were disqualified from the Andhra Pradesh Assembly for openly defying the whips issued by their respective parties during voting on the no confidence motion in March this year.
Announcing his verdict here on Saturday, Speaker Nadendla Manohar said these MLAs – nine of Congress and six TDP -- stood disqualified from the 13 Legislative Assembly for violating their party whips.
The Telangana Rashtra Samiti had moved a motion of no confidence against the Kiran Reddy government and was supported by Y.S. Jaganmohan Reddy’s YSR Congress on March 15. The Congress had asked its members to vote against the no-trust motion while the TDP instructed its MLAs to remain neutral.
But 18 MLA of both these parties stepped out of line, following which disqualification petitions were moved against them.
The MLAs are: R.V.S.K. Ranga Rao, D. Chandrasekhara Reddy, A.K. Srinivas, M. Rajesh, Jogi Ramesh, Perini Venkataramaiah, B. Sivaprasada Reddy, Gottipati Ravi Kumar and Peddireddy Ramachandra Reddy (all Congress), P. Sairaj, T. Vanitha, Kodali Srivenkateswara Rao, Y. Balanagi Reddy, A.V. Praveen Kumar Reddy and N. Amarnatha Reddy (all TDP). Hearing is on in respect of three other TDP MLAs facing disqualification – K. Harishwar Reddy, S. Venugopala Chary and Chinna Ramakotaiah.
Virtual replay of political drama
These developments are a virtual replay of the political drama enacted in March 2012 when 17 Congress and TDP MLAs were disqualified for voting against the government during the no confidence motion.
The party-wise break up in the 279-member Assembly now is: Congress (146 plus one Nominated member), TDP (79), TRS and YSRC (17 each), MIM (seven), CPI (four), BJP (three), CPI (M) and Lok Satta (one each) and Independents (three).
In his judgment, the Speaker said he was of the opinion that respondents had exercised their vote on the no confidence motion on the floor contrary to the whip issued, attracting provisions of the X Schedule to the Constitution read with the AP Legislative Assembly (Disqualification on the ground of Defection) Rules 1986.
The Speaker contended that consequent to the notices served on the members, they had not appeared in person but written letters that they had voted in favour of the motion and sought to be disqualified.
YSRC loyalists said they were proud to be disqualified as they had taken a principled stand after the Congress and the TDP had joined hands to cause hardship to late YSR’s family.