New Delhi: An Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) delegation on Friday met President Pranab Mukherjee seeking disqualification of 35 BJP and Congress MLAs appointed as Parliamentary Secretaries in four states, and asserted that its 21 legislators were being targeted for political reasons over the office of profit issue.
A delegation, led by Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, Delhi Ministers Gopal Rai and Kapil Mishra and party leader Ashutosh, said while 21 AAP MLAs are facing disqualification proceedings, similar set of rules should be applied to 35 BJP and Congress legislators, appointed as Parliamentary Secretaries in Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh.
Sisodia said 11 MLAs in Chhattisgarh and Gujarat each and four in Haryana -- all BJP ruled states -- and nine in Himachal Pradesh, a Congress-governed state, have been appointed as Parliamentary Secretaries.
In his petition to the President, Sisodia has said the appointment of these Chief Parliamentary Secretaries/ Parliamentary Secretaries are "prima facie in violation in letter and spirit of the Constitution of India" as they are getting salaries, allotted VIP vehicles and other perks for which ministers in these states are entitled.
"It is very pertinent to bring to your notice that the financial condition of these states is bleeding.
"Therefore, it is respectfully prayed that these MLAs, who are holding office of profit in addition to being MLAs should be immediately disqualified," Sisodia said in his memorandum to the President.
He said, contrary to this, the AAP MLAs are not enjoying any kind of pecuniary gains.
"We seek similar treatment to these 29 MLAs as our legislators are being targeted for political reasons," Sisodia said.
21 AAP MLAs are facing disqualification for allegedly holding 'Office of Profit', following a petition filed by Prashant Patel, a city-based lawyer.
Rai denied giving any kind of accommodation or office to 21 AAP MLAs.
"In our reply to the Election Commission on issue of Office of Profit, we said that we had requested the PWD to make offices for few people.
"However, offices were readied, but those were not given to Parliamentary Secretaries. Instead, it was given to OSDs (Officer on Special Duty) to Parliamentary Secretaries," Rai said.