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National News

Jul 08, 2019

Delhi HC declines to entertain plea seeking directions to LS Speaker to appoint LoP

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The Delhi High Court today declined to entertain a plea seeking directions to the Lok Sabha Speaker to appoint a Leader of Opposition (LoP) in the House.

A bench comprising Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice C Hari Shankar reasoned that there was no law which prescribed the appointment of an LoP.

The court said there was no statutory requirement for appointing an LoP and it saw no reason to direct the framing of a policy for it.

The bench also said that a similar plea was disposed of by the court in 2014 without granting any relief.

The court disposed of the PIL moved by two advocates who had alleged that the speaker was not performing his statutory duty of appointing the LoP.

They had claimed in the petition that recognising a member of the House as the LoP was not political or arithmetical, but a "statutory" decision. The petition had also sought framing of a policy for appointment of the LoP.

They had contended that denying the second largest party the post in Parliament sets a wrong precedent and dilutes democracy. West Bengal's Behrampur MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury has been elected as the leader of the Congress parliamentary party in the Lok Sabha.

The petition had said that under the Salaries and Allowances of Leaders of Opposition in Parliament Act of 1977, the person who is the leader of the numerically biggest party in opposition to the government is considered as the LoP.

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