MP BJP leader moves SC, seeks hearing in assault case

MP BJP leader moves SC, seeks hearing in assault case
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BJP leader Prahlad Lodhi, who was recently disqualified as Madhya Pradesh MLA after being convicted in a 2014 assault case, has filed a caveat in the Supreme Court

New Delhi: BJP leader Prahlad Lodhi, who was recently disqualified as Madhya Pradesh MLA after being convicted in a 2014 assault case, has filed a caveat in the Supreme Court saying that he too be heard when the appeal of the state government is taken up for hearing.

The Madhya Pradesh government has filed an appeal against the High Court order of November 7, by which Lodhi's conviction and the two-years jail term in the assault case has been stayed.

"We have filed a caveat (to prevent an ex-parte order). We have sought hearing alongwith the state government's petition. We are expecting the date of hearing to be fixed in a day or so," Lodhi's counsel and former advocate general Purushendra Kaurav said. Last month, Lodhi, a legislator from Pawai constituency was convicted by the trial court and was awarded two-years jail term for attacking the Raipura Tehsildar in August 2014.

After his conviction and sentence, Lodhi was disqualified by Madhya Pradesh Assembly speaker on November 2. The Madhya Pradesh High Court, on November 7, stayed Lodhi's conviction and sentence. The BJP has claimed that the speaker's decision to disqualify Lodhi was taken in haste. Speaker N P Prajapati, at the time, had said, as per the Supreme Court's ruling, a public representative should be disqualified as soon as he or she is convicted, and the rule was followed in Lodhi's case.

As per the apex court's ruling in a 2013 case, it was held that a legislator is disqualified if he or she is sentenced to two years or more in jail. Lodhi and others were convicted under IPC sections 353 (assault on public servant to deter him from discharge of his duty) and 332 (voluntarily causing hurt to a public servant) of the Indian Penal Code.

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