Delhi

HC sets aside fine imposed on Ambika Soni, Kumari Selja

A Division Bench said it was of the view that as a matter of propriety, Kumari Selja (in photo) and Ambika Soni ought to have held their hands till the declaration of the results. —file photos

A Division Bench said it was of the view that as a matter of propriety, Kumari Selja (in photo) and Ambika Soni ought to have held their hands till the declaration of the results. —file photos  

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The Delhi High Court on Monday set aside the fine of Rs. 25,000 each imposed on Congress MPs Ambika Soni and Kumari Selja on their writ petitions challenging their eviction from type-VIII bungalows in Lutyens' Delhi, but said they should have waited till declaration of the 2014 Lok Sabha elections for allotment of houses.

The allotment of type-VIII bungalows was made to the two Congress leaders, who are now Rajya Sabha members, in March and April 2014. A Single Judge Bench of the High Court held on July 30 that they were not entitled to stay there as per the Rajya Sabha Secretariat norms.

Disposing of the appeals of Ms. Soni and Ms. Selja against the judgment, a Division Bench said it was of the view that as a matter of propriety, the appellants “ought to have held their hands till the declaration of the results”.

The Bench, comprising Justice Pradeep Nandrajog and Justice Rajiv Shakdher, expunged some of the observations made in the Single Judge Bench verdict, saying they were perhaps not necessary in order to reach a decision on the central issues raised in the writ petition.

The Court said there was some amount of ambiguity in the guidelines formulated by the Rajya Sabha Secretariat for allotment of bungalows to their Members, especially in the case of those who had held the position of Cabinet Ministers.

“The guidelines required interpretation, an exercise which was carried out by the Single Judge on account of their obvious ambiguity.”

The Single Judge had imposed a cost of Rs.25,000 each on Ms. Soni and Ms. Selja while holding that they were not entitled to the accommodation in which they were living.

During the hearing of the appeal, both the MPs told the Court that they were willing to vacate their larger type-VIII bungalows and move to type-VII houses, to which they were entitled.



A Division Bench said it was of the view that as a matter of propriety, Kumari Selja and Ambika Soni ought to have held their hands till the declaration of the results



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Printable version | Jan 26, 2020 5:29:06 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/hc-sets-aside-fine-imposed-on-ambika-soni-kumari-selja/article7626773.ece

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