Disqualified BJP MLAs move SC

| 06 June 2005 19:14 IST

Two Bharatiya Janata Party leaders from Goa, Rajender Arlekar and Dayanand Mandrekar, on Monday approached the Supreme Court challenging the Mumbai high court judgement disqualifying them as legislators.

The two filed a petition on behalf of two leaders before a bench comprising Justice P V Reddi and Justice Arijit Pasayat, which said the matter will be considered before the vacation bench.

The Panaji bench of the Mumbai high court had set aside the election of the two BJP MLA's on grounds of holding office of profit during the May 2002 Assembly polls.

While Mandrekar was chairman of the Khadi and Village Industries Board, Arlekar held the post of chairperson of Goa State Scheduled Castes and Other Backward Classes Finance and Development Corporation.

The high court on May 27 had set aside the elections of Arlekar and Mandrekar from Vasco and Siolim seat respectively.

Two Nationalist Congress Party candidates# Jose Philip d'Souza and Chandrakant Chodankar# who had contested the assembly polls in 2002, challenged the BJP leaders' elections separately in the court.

But the court had not allowed their prayer that they be reinstated as returning candidates in place of Arlekar and Mandrekar.

The court had granted a stay on the order for 30 days.

With Sunday's result, in which the BJP managed one seat, the strength of Congress and its allies comprising the United Legislature Party rose to 21 in the 39-member House.

Congress alone has 18 while the NCP and the Maharashtawadi Gomantak Party account for two and one seats, respectively. The BJP has its tally at 17 and enjoys the support of the lone UGDP member.

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