Hyderabad HC stays single judge order on legislator’s suspension

Hyderabad, March 22 (IANS) The Hyderabad High Court on Tuesday stayed a single judge order suspending the sentence imposed by the Andhra Pradesh assembly on YSR Congress legislator R. K. Roja.

A division bench comprising Acting Chief Justice B. Bhosale and Justice P. Naveen Rao pronounced the order on an appeal filed by the legislature secretary, challenging the March 17 orders of the single judge.

The division bench on Monday heard arguments from both the sides and reserved its orders.

Roja was suspended from the assembly for one year in December last on the charge of using unparliamentary and abusive language against members of the ruling Telugu Desam Party (TDP), including Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu.

The actress-turned-politician had approached the high court, challenging the action of the assembly speaker.

As her petition was not promptly numbered and listed before an appropriate bench, she approached the Supreme Court, which directed the high court to expeditiously hear the case.

The single judge, in his interim order, stayed Roja’s suspension. However, Roja was not allowed to attend the ongoing budget session, triggering strong protests from the lone opposition party.

The assembly’s privileges committee on Monday submitted its report, recommending one- year suspension for Roja.

Legislative Affairs Minister Y. Ramakrishnudu announced in the house that Roja will get another opportunity to offer her explanation with regard to the incidents that took place in the house on December 18 last.

The panel will submit another report, based on which the house will take a final decision. “Till that time, the member will remain suspended,” he said.

Meanwhile, the YSR Congress plans to challenge the division bench’s order in the Supreme Court. Roja is likely to file an appeal after receiving a copy of the high court order.

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