Aam Aadmi Party MP Raghav Chadha has filed a plea in the Supreme Court challenging his suspension from the Rajya Sabha.
Chadha was suspended from the Parliament's Upper House on August 11 for “gross violation of rule, misconduct, defiant attitude and contemptuous conduct".
The action against him had come upon complaints by four MPs – Sasmit Patra, S Phangnon Konyak, M Thambidurai and Narhari Amin.
The MPs had accused him of including their names on a motion without their consent, and a complaint was lodged before Jagdeep Dhankar, the Vice President and Rajya Sabha chairman. Their names were allegedly added by Chadha on a motion seeking the constitution of a select committee to study the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (Amendment) Bill, 2023.
In his plea before the apex court, Chadha has argued that his suspension was in clear violation of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Council of States (Rajya Sabha) as well as Articles 14 and 21 of the Constitution. The Rajya Sabha Secretariat and its chairperson are respondents in the petition filed before the court.
The plea contended that there exists a categorical prohibition against the suspension of any member for a period exceeding the remainder of the sessions. He has been suspended since the last hour of the Monsoon Session of Parliament this year.
Chadha submitted that he is not able to attend the meetings of the standing committee on finance and the committee on subordinate legislation, which continue their work even when Parliament is not in session.
The plea said in terms of Article 101(4) of the Constitution, the effect of an indefinite suspension, particularly outside the period of session is to de-facto create a vacancy after a period of sixty days, which also shows the prima facie illegality of the impugned action.
Chadha’s plea contended that a suspension cannot have an effect of expulsion and create a vacancy in the House.