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Didn’t violate natural justice in disqualifying AAP MLAs: EC

The EC's counsel was arguing on the allegation raised by AAP MLAs that the EC had not given them the opportunity to hold an oral hearing in the matter, violating the principles of natural justice.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
February 23, 2018 3:10:12 am
delhi high court, sit probe, 1984 sikh riots, sajjan kumar, congress, indian express The Delhi High Court (Express Photo by Ravi Kanojia/Files)

The Election Commission Thursday told the Delhi High Court that it did not “violate the principles of natural justice” while dealing with the case of disqualification of 20 AAP MLAs, maintaining that the accusation was “completely misplaced”. Stating that the EC’s action in the case was not tantamount to violating the principles of natural justice, the EC’s counsel, Amit Sharma, told a bench of Justice Sanjiv Khanna and Justice Chander Shekhar: “Oral hearing is but one of the tenets of principles of natural justice. When I asked them to come and represent, make their submissions, make their pleas, I, in fact, am conscious of the principles of natural justice.The degree of test of principle of natural justice will be different in cases where trial takes place and different in cases like these, as per my view.”

The counsel was arguing on the allegation raised by AAP MLAs that the EC had not given them the opportunity to hold an oral hearing in the matter, violating the principles of natural justice.

The counsel also said that “the present is not a case of no opportunity” being given to the AAP MLAs. The counsel pointed to notices issued to the MLAs in the matter, their replies and those of GNCTD while alleging that the “whole purpose was to keep the process prolonged” and that the MLAs had “willfully and deliberately” kept away from being a part of the EC’s proceedings. The EC’s arguments are expected to continue on February 26, the next date of hearing.

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