Odishatv Bureau

Odisha Assembly Speaker on Thursday disqualified two MLAs- Premananda Nayak and Arabinda Dhali, who recently joined BJP after quitting BJD, under anti-defection law.

While Dhali was the MLA from Jayadev constituency, Nayak was the legislator of Telkoi.

A notification on the disqualification of both the MLAS has been issued by the Odisha Legislative Assembly. 

As per official sources, the disqualification of the two leaders will be effective immediately. They have been disqualified in exercise of the powers conferred upon the Speaker under paragraph 6(1) of the tenth Schedule of the Constitution of India.

The Speaker decided to disqualify Dhali and Nayak after MLA Prasanta Kumar Muduli filed a petition on March 18 under Rule 6 of the Members of Odisha Legislative Assembly (Disqualification on Ground of Defection) Rules, 1978 framed under paragraph 8 of the 10th Schedule to the Indian Constitution seeking disqualification of two members as they voluntarily gave up primary membership from the BJD in which they were elected to the Assembly.

In this regard, a notice was reportedly sent to Dhali and Nayak for hearing on the petition as required under Rule 7 of the rules. However, both of them failed to respond to the communication in this regard and did not appear before the Speaker for personal hearing following which they were disqualified to be members of Odisha Assembly with immediate effect.

On his disqualification, Nayak said he accepted the decision of the Speaker. "It will have no impact and I am not anxious over this decision. I will work for the party in which today I am," said Nayak.

Meanwhile, Dhali said that he should have been given an opportunity to present his side before the disqualification but without giving him a chance, a one-sided decision has been taken.

Odisha Assembly Speaker, Pramila Mallik said, "The way the two MLAs of the BJD – Premananda Nayak and Arabinda Dhali quit the party contravening the law, action has been taken against them accordingly. They have not done so as per the required majority as mandated in the existing anti-defection law. Hence, their membership has been annulled.”

She made it clear that action will be taken against legislators, who are quitting their parties in violation of the law if written complaints are received.