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Nagaland Speaker dismisses disqualification petition against 7 NPF MLAs

Nagaland Assembly Speaker Sharingain Longkumer on Tuesday dismissed the disqualification petition against seven Naga People’s Front (NPF) MLAs.

In an order, Longkimer said basing on his findings and the decision of each issue framed and taking into account the decisions of the Supreme Court which are applicable to the facts and circumstances of the case, it was established beyond doubt that there is no sufficient ground for presuming that the respondents had voluntarily had given up the membership of the original political party, the NPF.

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“Hence, I decide that the respondents are not liable to be disqualified under Para 2(1) (a) of the Tenth Schedule,” the Speaker said. Accordingly, he said he dismissed the petition no. AS/LC-06PFD-1(a-g)/2019.

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The petition was filed by NPF legislators Chotisuh Sazo and Imkong L Imchen, seeking disqualification of the respondents EE Pangteang, Eshak Konyak, Kejong Chang, BS Nganlang Phom, Toyang Chang, N Thongwang Konyak and CL John, all MLAs, who were elected to the state Assembly on NPF ticket.

The judgement was pronounced in the open conference hall of the Nagaland Legislative Assembly in the presence of both the parties.

The NPF filed the disqualification petition before the Speaker against seven of its MLAs on April 24 last year for supporting Nationalist Democratic Progressive Party (NDPP) candidate Tokheho Yepthomi in the April 11, 2019, Lok Sabha polls though the party had decided to back the Congress’s KL Chishi.

In a written declaration on March 25 last year, they announced to support the rival NDPP candidate in the Lok Sabha election. 

The Kohima bench of the Gauhati High Court in the first week of June directed the Speaker to conclude the disqualification proceedings against the seven NPF MLAs and pass appropriate orders within six weeks.

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