WPI, TDP Hail SC Decision on Convicted Lawmaker Disqualification

SM Fasiullah for BeyondHeadlines

Welfare Party of India, Andhra Pradesh President Malik Motasim Khan hailed the Supreme Court (SC) judgement on immediate disqualification of convicted lawmakers as a “much needed move” to cleanse the political system of India.

While calling it a landmark judgement, Mr. Khan noted that it will surely help in keeping away and discouraging criminals from entering into the political system. He said WPI strives for value-based politics and will give tickets to candidates with no criminal record.

India's Apex Court Takes on Lawmakers, with ConvictionTelugu Desam Party President N. Chandrababu Naidu also hailed the Apex court judgment as “historic” and wanted all political parties to keep out criminals.

Under Section 8(3) of the Representation of the People Act (RPA), a person convicted of any offence and sentenced to imprisonment for not less than two years shall be disqualified from contesting elections. In addition, the person cannot contest for six years even after acquittal.

“The only question is about the vires of section 8(4) of the Representation of the People Act (RPA) and we hold that it is ultra vires and that the disqualification takes place from the date of conviction,” the SC judgement reads.

While addressing a press conference, Mr. Naidu stated it was unfortunate that the SC had to intervene to declare it as unconstitutional. He said the government could have introduced such needed electoral reforms to impede entry of criminals into politics.

Mr. Naidu expressed the need to bring in youth into politics and his preference for young blood, and stressed that there was no second opinion about it.

The Apex court noted that its decision will not apply to convicted MPs and MLAs who have already filed their appeals in higher courts before the pronouncement of this verdict.

As a result of this landmark judgement, several lawmakers the Parliament and state assemblies who were convicted in criminal case(s) may lose their seats.


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