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Larger SC bench to examine if an expelled MP is bound by whip


The Supreme Court has referred to a larger bench the issue whether a lawmaker is bound by the party whip even after his or her expulsion. The apex court was hearing a plea filed by Rajya Sabha MP and expelled Samajwadi Party member Amar Singh, who has sought to declare that the provisions of the 10th Schedule of the Constitution relating to disqualification on ground of defection do not apply to an elected member of a House who has been expelled by the party.

A bench of Justices Dipak Misra and A M Khanwilkar said the petition be placed before Chief Justice of India J S Khehar for the constitution of an appropriate larger bench to deal with the issues. The apex court also issued notice to the Centre on the interim relief sought by Singh that the 1996 verdict shall not apply to him while the issues raised by him are pending consideration by the larger bench.

As per the interpretation of the anti-defection law by the Supreme Court in 1996, a member elected or nominated by a political party continues to be under its control even after his or her expulsion.

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