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    Petition against George valid: Speaker

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    Petition against George valid: Speaker
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    Thiruvananthapuram: In a blow to Kerala Congress(M) rebel MLA and former Government Chief Whip P C George, Assembly Speaker N Sakthan Thursday ruled that petition filed by KC-M seeking his disqualification under the anti-defection law was valid.

    Sakthan said the arguments put forward by George against the petition were not maintainable and further hearing on the same would be taken up later this month.

    Chief Whip Thomas Unniyadan filed the petition on behalf of KC-M lead by state Finance Minister K M Mani.

    George had claimed that charges that he had worked against the party and violated party discipline would not stand and the evidences had not been examined in the manner as per law.

    The evidence collection would be held on September 26, the Speaker said.

    Reacting to the development, George said he would move the court against the Speaker’s ruling.

    Cracking down on George, Kerala Congress(M), the third largest partner in the ruling front with nine MLAs, had sought to disqualify him as a legislator for his alleged anti-party activities.

    George had been openly criticising the UDF leaders, including Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and leaders of KC-M, following which he was removed as party Vice-Chairman and Government Chief Whip in April last.

    KC(M) has complained that George had worked against the ruling Congress-led UDF candidate in the Aruvikkara Assembly by-election held in June last.

    He had also put up a candidate against the UDF candidate in the bypoll.

    George had been wanting the party to expel him so that he could revive his faction Kerala Congress (Secular) and continue to be a part of UDF as a separate partner, without attracting the anti-defection law.

    But Mani was not in favour of keeping George in the front as a separate partner.

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