Will Owaisi’s Parliament membership be cancelled? Complaint made to the President for chanting ‘Jai Palestine’

AIMIM president Asaduddin Owaisi on Tuesday stoked a controversy when he concluded his oath-taking ceremony as Hyderabad MP in the Lok Sabha with a slogan ‘Jai Palestine’. Several Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders have said that the slogan, which has now been expunged from Lok Sabha records, could lead to Owaisi’s disqualification from Parliament for “demonstrating devotion to a foreign state”. Apart from praising his state, Telangana, and BR Ambedkar, Owaisi, elected for the fifth time from the Hyderabad seat, raised the slogan ‘Jai Palestine’ after taking oath in Urdu, sparking a controversy. A complaint has been filed with the President to disqualify Owaisi as an MP.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kiren Rijiju said he had received complaints from some members about Owaisi’s Palestine remarks, adding he would examine the rules. “We have no animosity with Palestine or any other country. The only issue is, is it appropriate for a member to raise slogans in praise of another country while taking oath? We will have to examine the rules,” he said. BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya posted a snippet of Article 102 of the Constitution and a video clip of Owaisi’s slogan on Twitter. “As per the existing rules, Asaduddin Owaisi can be disqualified from his Lok Sabha membership for displaying devotion to a foreign state, that is Palestine,” Malviya said.

A day after AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owaisi created a ruckus by praising the strife-torn West Asian country after taking oath as a member of the 18th Lok Sabha, two complaints were filed against him on Wednesday. According to information, the complaint was filed by lawyer Hari Shankar Jain against Owaisi for raising slogans in the House. The second complaint against Owaisi was filed by lawyer Vineet Jindal, who confirmed on X that he had filed a complaint against Owaisi under Article 103 of the Constitution of India.

Article 102 states the grounds for disqualification as a member of Parliament.

1- A person shall be disqualified for being chosen as, and for being, a member of either House of Parliament.

(a) The holder of this office shall not be disqualified if he holds any office of profit under the Government of India or the Government of any State, other than an office declared by Parliament by law to be such office.

(b) if he is of unsound mind and has been so declared by a competent court;

(c) if he is an undischarged insolvent.

(d) if he is not a citizen of India, or has voluntarily acquired the citizenship of a foreign State, or is under an acknowledgement of allegiance or adherence to a foreign State.

(e) if he has been disqualified by or under any law made by Parliament.

2- A person shall be disqualified for being a member of either House of Parliament if he is disqualified under the Tenth Schedule.

The Tenth Schedule – known as the Anti-Defection Act – penalises individual Members of Parliament (MPs) for leaving one party and joining another. It lays down provisions for disqualifying elected members on the ground of joining another political party.

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