Swapan Dasgupta resigns from Rajya Sabha to fight Bengal polls

Swapan Dasgupta resigns from Rajya Sabha to fight Bengal polls

Hummingbird News Desk

KOLKATA, 16 MARCH: Swapan Dasgupta, a BJP candidate for the Bengal election, has resigned from the Rajya Sabha a day after the Trinamul Congress cited constitutional rules to say a nominated member of the Upper House could not join a political party. Dasgupta has been fielded by the BJP from the Tarakeshwar Assembly constituency in Hooghly district.

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His resignation came after Trinamul Congress MP from Krishnagar, Mahua Moitra raised objection to Mr Dasgupta being named as a BJP candidate for the upcoming assembly polls in West Bengal.

“Swapan Dasgupta is BJP candidate for WB polls. 10th Schedule of Constitution says nominated RS member to be disqualified if he joins any political party AFTER expiry of 6 months from oath. He was sworn in April 2016, remains unallied. Must be disqualified NOW for joining BJP,” Moitra tweeted last night.

“Following up on my previous tweet – Rajya Sabha website as of today says Swapan Dasgupta is nominated & not formally BJP. If he files nomination as @BJP candidate he should be disqualified according to the Constitution’s 10th Schedule (Para 2 (3)),” she also tweeted.

She also claimed that Dasgupta should “either resign RS now or be disqualified” and said he has “no safety net”.

Meanwhile, Trinamul’s Rajya Sabha MP and party’s chief whip in Rajya Sabha, Sukhendu Shekhar Roy today sent a petition  under Rule 6 to the Chairman Rajya Sabha.

The Petition under Rule 6 of the Members of Rajya Sabha (Disqualification on grounds of Defection)RULES, 1985 seeking Disqualification of Swapan Dasgupta under paragraph 2(3) of the Tenth Schedule of The Consttitution.

Through this petition Mr Roy wanted  to bring to the notice of the Chairperson certain blatant and brazen actions of the Mr Dasgupta, who, despite being an unaffiliated nominated member of the Rajya Sabha nominated by the President of India under Article 80(1)(a) of the Constitution, has committed the constitutional sin of defection under Para-2(3) of the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution.

Mr Dasgupta after nominated to Rajya Sabha by the President of India took oath or affirmation

under Article 99 of the Constitution on 26April 2016.

Mr Roy also attached an extract of the Bulletin of the Rajya Sabha dated  26 April, 2016 where Mr Dasgupta was seen taking the oath.

“Under paragraph 2(3) of the Tenth Schedule read with the Practice and Procedures for ‘Nominated Members of the Rajya Sabha’,  is allowed six months as a ‘nominated member’  is allowed six months, should he decide to join a political party after he has taken his seat in the House in terms of Article 99of the Constitution.

Mr Roy also provided a screenshot of the page of the Rajya Sabha website giving particulars of Mr Dasgupta as a nominated member not affiliated to any  political party along with a certificate under Section 65-B of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872.

On Monday, Mr Dasgupta had said he would respond to the TMC’s charge “appropriately’. “Right now, I am busy with election campaigning. If any letter comes to me from Rajya Sabha, then I will respond to it appropriately,” Mr Dasgupta had said.

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