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Madras HC Pulls Up CEC, Asks Why Polls Not Held for 18 Constituencies of Disqualified AIADMK MLAs

File photo of the Madras High Court.

File photo of the Madras High Court.

The 18 AIADMK MLAs had been disqualified on September 18 last year by Speaker P Dhanapal under the anti-defection law after they met the governor and expressed loss of confidence in Chief Minister K Palaniswami.

Madurai: The Madras High Court Tuesday issued a notice to Tamil Nadu's chief election commissioner and chief electoral officer asking why elections for 18 constituencies, whose representatives were disqualified by the state assembly speaker, had not been held.

A bench of Justices K K Sasidharan and P D Audikesavalu here issued the notice based on a public interest litigation filed by Damodaran stating that about 27 lakh voters in the 18 constituencies were without representatives and unable to air their grievances to their MLAs.

The 18 AIADMK MLAs had been disqualified on September 18 last year by Speaker P Dhanapal under the anti-defection law after they met the governor and expressed loss of confidence in Chief Minister K Palaniswami.

The disqualification of the MLAs was upheld by the Madras High Court in October last.

Justice Sathyanarayanan had said the petitioners had failed to substantiate the allegation of malafide against the speaker.

The judge had also vacated the interim orders passed by the court granting a stay on floor test and a direction to the Election Commission not to declare the seats of disqualified lawmakers vacant.