Court sets aside Roja’s suspension from Andhra assembly

Hyderabad, March 17 (IANS) The Hyderabad High Court on Thursday set aside the suspension of opposition YSR Congress Party legislator R. K. Roja from the Andhra Pradesh state legislative for one year.

Passing interim orders on Roja’s petition challenging the assembly speaker’s move, Justice Ramalingeswara Rao suspended the assembly resolution that had sought her suspension.

The actress-turned-politician, who represents Nagari constituency in Chittoor district, was suspended from the assembly during the winter session for one year for allegedly using “abusive” language against members of ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP) including Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu.

Legislative Affairs Minister Y. Ramakrishnudu had moved a resolution to this effect and Speaker K. Sivaprasad Rao had announced that the same is passed by a voice vote.

The aggrieved member had approached the Supreme Court, challenging her suspension. The apex court on Tuesday had directed High Court at Hyderabad for the states of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana,to immediately hear her petition.

The judge observed that prima facie the house does not have power to suspend a member under rule 340 of the assembly rules for one year, and the member can only be suspended for the session under this rule for disrupting the proceedings.

The court adjourned the final hearing of the case by four weeks.

Meanwhile, the government has decided to challenge the single judge’s order before the division bench. It was decided to file an appeal through the legislature secretary to challenge the order. The government argues that as per the constitution, the courts can’t overrule the decisions of the legislature.

Following the court order, Roja came to the assembly building. She met legislature secretary and handed over copy of the court order. Legislators of YSR Congress welcomed her when she reached the assembly.

Terming it as victory of truth, Roja said she would attend the assembly session from Friday and that the suspension had deprived her of the right to raise people’s issues in the assembly.

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