Telangana Legislative Council Chairman on Wednesday disqualified three Members of Legislative Council (MLCs), who had defected to the Congress on the eve of recent elections to the state Assembly.
Acting on a petition filed by the ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS), K. Swamy Goud disqualified K. Yadav Reddy, R. Bhoopathi Reddy and S. Ramulu Naik. The Chairman, who recently completed the hearing on the petition, disqualified the MLCs under the 10th schedule of the Constitution and the rules of Telangana Legislative Council.
Yadav Reddy was elected to the Upper House by MLAs, Bhoopathi Reddy was elected from Nizamabad Local Authorities Constituency while Ramulu Naik was nominated by the Governor.
The action came three days before the beginning of Legislative Council session. Just last week, the TRS presented its argument for the disqualification of three of its MLCs and demanded legal action for 'anti-party' activities.
Four MLCs had defected to the Congress ahead of the polls, but Konda Murali, who defected along with his wife and then incumbent MLA Konda Surekha, resigned his post, while the other three continued to be MLCs on paper, even though the TRS announced that they were suspended.
Speaking to reporters after presenting the partyâ€™s argument, Government Whip and TRS MLC Palla Rajeshwar Reddy said that the people elected the four MLCs because they were contesting on a TRS ticket and therefore, their defection should ensure that they were disqualified.
In a major blow to the Congress in Telangana last month, four out of six remaining Members of MLCs from the party defected to the ruling TRS, after it swept the Assembly elections in the state. The four MLCs, led by Akula Lalitha (who had contested the Armoor seat on a Congress ticket) met Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao and shifted their loyalties.
This has left the Congress with only two MLCs â€” Shabbir Ali and Ponguleti Sudhakar â€” whose term will end in March this year.