HYDERABAD: Senior Congress leader S Jaipal Reddy has said that the power to disqualify MLAs and MPs defecting from one party to another should be transferred to the Election Commission (EC) from the Speaker.
“Though legislators are defecting from one party to another party and ruling parties are openly encouraging defections, speakers are not taking any action. As the Speaker will most probably be from the ruling party, he will not take any action against the ruling party or legislators defecting to ruling party. Therefore the power to disqualify the legislators defecting from one party to the other should be given to the Election Commission,” said Jaipal Reddy speaking at a seminar held on the topic ‘Defections in political parties and Speaker’s role,’ in Hyderabad on Sunday.
Rueing the fact that political parties have been brazenly encouraging defections and many politicians today have been bringing disgrace to speaker’s role, Jaipal Reddy pointed out that shifting the responsibility of taking action on defections from Speaker to EC, will not just discourage defections but also protect the dignity of speaker position.
In the seminar attended by former judges, politicians, intellectuals, though few observed that shifting of authority to disqualify defecting MLAs and MPs, from speaker to EC would undermine the speaker’s position, many supported it, referring to recent instances and how speakers have not been taking action on defections in Telangana state.
The seminar was held in the wake of defections of opposition party leaders in both the Telugu states of AP and Telangana to the ruling parties.
In Telangana, the opposition party leaders including those from Congress, TDP, BSP, YSRC and CPI shifted loyalties to TRS while in AP, the YSRC elected representatives shifted to ruling TDP.
Former Supreme Court Judges B Sudershan Reddy, BP Jeevan Reddy, Loksatta founder president Jayaprakash Narayana, Jana Chaitanya Vedika president V Lakshamana Reddy took part in the seminar.