GUWAHATI: The Gauhati High Court on February 8 will decide whether seven MLAs of opposition Naga People’s Front (NPF) in Nagaland can attend the forthcoming Assembly session.
They had in 2019 defected to the National Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP), which heads the state’s ruling coalition, and were subsequently suspended by the NPF.
The Kohima bench of the Gauhati HC will hear an interlocutory application filed by the NPF seeking the court’s interference in restraining the seven from attending the Assembly session beginning on February 12.
A disqualification petition, filed against them by the NPF, was dismissed by Speaker Sharingain Longkumer in July last year which prompted the NPF to move the court challenging the Speaker’s decision.
The Speaker said there were no sufficient grounds to presume that the MLAs had voluntarily given up the membership of NPF.
The NPF had filed the petition against the legislators in 2019 for willfully defying its decision on supporting the Congress nominee in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections to the state’s lone seat.
The NPF claimed the seven had willfully given up their party membership, thereby attracting provisions under the 10th Schedule (anti-defection law).