The Delhi High Court Friday stayed East Delhi Municipal Corporation’s August 26 decision of terminating the membership of former Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Councillor Tahir Hussain from the municipal body. Hussain is an accused in different cases pertaining to the Northeast Delhi violence.
The EDMC had taken the decision to terminate him after he allegedly remained absent from the meetings of the Corporation conducted in the months of January, February, June and July. The decision was taken under a provision stating that if any member remains absent “during three successive months” without giving any information then the corporation can cancel the membership of the concerned ward councilor and can declare the representation of the ward as vacant.
However, Hussain in his plea filed through advocate Rizwan contended that he has not absented himself from the meeting of the Corporation for the three “successive months” as the meetings were never held successively for three months till August when the EDMC took the decision to vacate his seat. “The meetings were held in the month of January, February (successively for two months) thereafter, the meetings were not held in the month of March, April and May thereafter, the meetings were again held in the month of June and July (successively for two months,” he argued before the court. Hussain, an elected councilor for Ward No. 59-E, Nehru Vihar, also has argued that he was neither issued a show-cause notice nor provided the opportunity of being heard before the decision was taken to vacate his seat.
The counsel representing the EDMC on Friday argued that the word “successive” used in the provision does not mean “consecutive” but should be interpreted to mean the meetings held successively and if a councilor is not appearing in three such meetings, then that will invite action. However, the court observed the matter requires consideration and granted a stay in favour of Hussain in the meantime.