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SC notice to EC on Congress plea against Goa health minister

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

The today sought the response of the Election Commission, government and others on a plea filed by the seeking disqualification of Vishwajit Rane, who quit as a MLA and joined the BJP ahead of the 2017 trust vote.

A bench, headed by Dipak Misra, issued notice to the poll panel, state government, and others while asking the parties to file their response within six weeks on the appeal filed by the and its unit against a order.

The bench of the high court had dismissed the Congress plea, holding that due to the voluntary resignation of from the Assembly, the question of disqualification under the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution of cannot be decided by it.

Claiming that the high court had erred, the petition said was elected as an MLA on a Congress ticket and resigned before the government proved its majority on the floor of the Assembly on March 17 last year.

"The Respondent No 5 (Sidharth Sripad) in collusion with Respondent No 6 (Rane) committed a fraud on the Constitution and as a result of which the Respondent No 6 was instrumental in engineering or ensuring the defeat of the petitioners in the floor test in March 2017. Thus, Respondent No 6 is not eligible to continue as a member of the as a result of the disqualification so incurred," it said.

Rane, who had won the seat on a Congress ticket in the state polls on February 4 last year, had resigned as a Congress MLA on March 16 to join the BJP.

He was inducted into the state Cabinet led by Chief Minister on April 12 and at present holds the health portfolio in the

The plea also said that the wrongly accepted Rane's resignation as an MLA before the floor test.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, February 09 2018. 20:50 IST