P.P. Mohammed Faizal has dubbed his restoration as MP of Lakshadweep on Wednesday as an encouraging sign for senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi who stands disqualified as Wayanad MP by the Lok Sabha Secretariat following his conviction by a Surat court for criminal defamation.
Mr. Faizal of the Nationalist Congress Party was similarly disqualified by the Lok Sabha Secretariat through a notification issued on January 13 after he was convicted and sentenced to 10 years imprisonment in an attempt to murder case by the Kavaratti District and Sessions court. However, the Kerala High Court suspended the conviction and sentence on January 25.
Lok Sabha Secretariat’s notification
In view of this verdict, the Lok Sabha Secretariat on Wednesday issued a notification stating that his disqualification has ceased to operate subject to further judicial pronouncements. He was disqualified invoking provisions of Article 102 (1)(e) of the Constitution read with Section 8 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
“I can confidently say that Rahul Gandhi will be back in the House once he gets the conviction stayed by the court,” Mr. Faizal told The Hindu over phone after attending his maiden Parliament session after being restored as Lakshadweep MP.
He rued that he could not attend the budget session of the Parliament despite having all the rights as per the law of the land (since by then the High Court had suspended his conviction). “They kept me outside and prevented me from entering the Parliament, which was a totally unwanted thing that could have been avoided. That could not be undone and I cannot regain it. I asked the Speaker about what could be done about my lost session and he had no answer. At least for Rahul Gandhi that should not happen,” said Mr. Faizal.
He said that Lakshadweep was ruled by executives for the last two months following his disqualification and the notification declaring gram panchayat constituencies Of Lakshadweep “Ultra Vires”, which had since been stayed by the Kerala High Court.
“The democratic pillar of panchayat in Lakshadweep is facing a dilemma. People of Lakshadweep have at least got their MP back now. Now i will have to fight in the Parliament against the new panchayat regulations promulgated and for restoring the rights of the elected members of the panchayat,” said Mr. Faizal.