‘Suspended JD(S) MLAs can vote in RS polls’

Its nearing two years since the JD(S) moved the office of Legislative Assembly Speaker K B Koliwad seeking disqualification of seven of its MLAs for cross-voting in 2016 Rajya Sabha elections.

As the matter is pending before the Speaker, the seven MLAs are eligible to cast votes during the upcoming Rajya Sabha elections scheduled for March 23. When contacted, Koliwad said that the JD(S) rebel MLAs were still members of the Legislative Assembly, as he is yet to pass a judgement.

“The JD(S) has filed a disqualification case. No decision has been taken, and the matter is pending. The MLAs have not been disqualified. They are still members. They are very much entitled to vote,” he said.

When asked why there was a delay in disposing of the case, Koliwad said, “The matter is pending before my court. Nobody, including the High Court and the Supreme Court, can question why there is a delay in the enquiry procedure.”

He also said that the rebel MLAs were required to show their votes to the JD(S) election agent, given that it is an open ballot. “According to the election rules, the suspended MLAs have to show their votes to the JD(S) election agent. Last time also, they showed that they havent voted for the JD(S) candidate. This time too they may do anything they want,” he added.

The Congress is again banking on the support of the seven MLAs to ensure victory of its third candidate in the polls.

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