New Delhi, Jan 20: The 31-year-old young advocate Prashant Patel is the man who recommended the disqualification of 20 Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLAs on grounds of holding office of profit as Parliamentary Secretaries. On June 19, 2015 when he had filed a petition to EC and President Mukherjee’s secretariat it had not caused any ripples then but on Friday the petition has resulted a major turmoil in the Capital.
“I did not file this petition because I am a part of any political party. I sent it as a layman. For someone interested in politics, in a city like Delhi, it is impossible to avoid it. I realised something was amiss. After doing research, I found the move to be unconstitutional and filed a plea with the President’s secretariat,” Indian Express quoted Patel as saying. (Also Read: AAP Slams EC, Moves HC Against Its Recommendation to Disqualify 20 Delhi MLAs)
Expressing satisfaction after EC’s action, Patel said that the AAP government flouted the rule, which says 15 percent of the total strength in the assemblies in big states and 10 percent in small states can be made ministers.
“When AAP formed government in Delhi on February 14, 2015, then 21 AAP MLAs were made parliamentary secretary on March 13, 2015, with the powers of deputy ministers. In this way, AAP government made 28 ministers instead of seven. Therefore, these appointments came under office of profit. I made a complaint with the President on June 19, 2015, against these appointments. The President forwarded my complaint to the Election Commission, which further issued notices to the 21 MLAs,” Patel said.
He further added that after the MLAs filed their reply with the election body, the oral hearings in this case were completed on March 27, 2017.
“Oral hearings started from July 14, 2016, till March 27, 2017. On June 23, 2017, the ECI said that the said MLAs held position of parliamentary secretary for 17 months. Delhi’s Chief Secretary told the ECI that the government spent Rs 11 lakh for allotting rooms in Delhi Assembly. The MLAs are not entitled to get rooms at the Assembly premises,” Patel added.
Who is Prashant Patel?
Prashant Patel belongs to Uttar Pradesh’s Fatehpur district. He finished his education from Saraswati Vidya Mandir in Jahanabad. Before studying law, Patel studied Physics and Creative Designing in a minority Christian college affiliated to the Allahabad University. He completed his LLB from Chaudhary Charan Singh University in Greater Noida.
Patel is a member of the Hindu Legal Cell. Earlier, he had filed an FIR against Aamir Khan and Rajkumar Hirani for allegedly portraying gods in a poor light in the film PK.