According to a report carried out by Live Law, Justices Abdul Nazeer, BR Gavai, AS Bopanna, V. A five-judge bench of Ramasubramaniam and BV Nagarathna observed that the present matter has been fully covered by the apex court’s decision. PV Narasimha Rao Vs State,
Though Solicitor General Tushar Mehta agreed, he submitted that the said decision was passed by a Constitution Bench in a division of 3:2. He argued that reconsideration of the said decision mentioned in the reference order may not be effective as the Bench is taking up the present matter and which has pronounced the judgment. PV Narasimha Case are of equal strength.
During the brief hearing, Justice Nagarathna said, “The question is whether it is an action within the House or the entire scope of the Act to be considered, immunity to the entire Act or not,” Live Law reported.
Sita Soren, a member of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha, was accused of accepting bribes for the purpose of voting for a particular candidate in the 2012 Rajya Sabha elections. After this, the Central Bureau of Investigation filed a charge sheet.
Challenging the same, Soren filed a petition before the Jharkhand High Court on the ground that he was exempted under Article 194(2) of the Constitution, 1950, which considers, ‘The Legislature of a State No member of the Board shall be liable for any action taken. in any court in respect of anything said by him in the Legislature or any vote given by him. The High Court dismissed the petition.
During the hearing, an appeal before the apex court relied on the decision In PV Narasimha Rao Vs State, which upheld the immunity enjoyed by MPs under Article 194(2) from prosecution for taking bribe in respect of a parliamentary vote. The Supreme Court then thought it appropriate to refer the matter to a Constitution Bench, which could reconsider its decision. PV Narasimha Rao Vs State,
The issue framed for reference was “Whether Article 105/194(2) of the Constitution of India precludes the prosecution of Members of Parliament/Legislative Assembly for an offense involving the offer or acceptance of a bribe for a caste vote in a legislature.” Offers discount. ? Live Law reported.