'Disqualify the defected MLAs inducted into Andhra cabinet': Jagan meets President
YSRCP chief Jaganmohan Reddy met with President Pranab Mukherjee on Wednesday in New Delhi over the issue of defected party legislators being inducted into the cabinet in Andhra Pradesh.
This comes days after Jagan also submitted a letter to Andhra Governor ESL Narasimhan, seeking immediate action on the issue.
The four new Ministers - Sujaya Krishna Ranga Rao from Bobbili, C Adinarayana Reddy from Jammalamadugu, N Amaranath Reddy from Palamaner and Bhuma Akhila Priya from Allagadda - are among the 21 YSRCP MLAs who defected to the Telugu Desam Party (TDP).
They were inducted last week along with Andhra Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu's son Nara Lokesh, among others.
Stating that Naidu had "no respect for the constitution and the democratic spirit", Jagan alleged that the TDP was welcoming defectors with open arms, on the assurance that they would not be disqualified.
“Mr Naidu, shockingly, let loose a reign of terror using the police against opposition and it is to the knowledge of everybody that the National Council for Applied Economic Research ranked AP under Mr Naidu as the most corrupt state in India,” the letter states.
Jagan also goes on to add, “He (Naidu) has overthrown the legendary NTR, his unsuspecting father-in-law and the founder of the TDP and became Chief Minister of AP in 1995 and has been since then surviving only by managing various institutions and opportunistically associating and disassociating with both Congress and BJP.”
Citing Article 164 (1) of the Constitution which talks about the appointment of ministers, Jagan states that the Governor need not mechanically accept every advice given by the Chief Minister.
He also pointed out that Naidu had cried foul when the TRS government had inducted MLA Talasani Srinivas Yadav, who defected to their party from the TDP, into the Telangana Cabinet in December 2014.
At that time, Naidu had demanded that the defected MLAs in Telangana should quit and seek re-election.
“To prevent this unconstitutional act becoming a precedent in the annals of Indian democracy and constitution, there is an urgent need to get all these Members of Legislative Assembly who defected from YSR Congress Party to Telugu Desam, disqualified under the Anti-defection law. I humbly request your office to take coercive action in upholding the spirit of our revered constitution,” the letter concludes.
Jagan had earlier called the induction of defected MLAs into the Cabinet a “mockery of the Constitution and democracy.”
Addressing mediapersons after the meeting with the President, Jagan said that the latter responded positively, and he was optimistic that it would yield a positive response.
"We explained the situation to him, wherein 21 MLAs belonging to YSR Congress Party have been lured by the TDP and all these 21 MLAs who shifted over, have not been disqualified for more than a year. The speaker doesn't react, while these defectors who have no moral right to continue as legislators, the Chandrababu Naidu government mocked democracy further, by inducting them into his cabinet," he said.
Earlier in the week, when Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu was asked about the TDP's move, he dismissed it, and said that anyone who defects to the party will have to resign and get re-elected to the post.