The office of profit issue which has the AAP root shaken at juncture owes this to a 31 year old advocate from UP who calls himself a layperson interested in politics. Prashant Patel had, on June 19, 2015, sent a 100-page report on the contentious appointments to the Election Commission and the President. That happened 98 days after Arvind Kejriwal government passed its order to appoint 21 MLAs as parliamentary secretaries. The Delhi Assembly passed the Delhi Member of Legislative Assembly (Removal of Disqualification) (Amendment Bill), 2015 after Patel contended that the MLAs holding office of profit should be disqualified. The act excludes parliamentary secretaries from ‘office of profit’ with retrospective effect. However, the then President Pranab Mukherjee withheld the assent to the amendment bill, and referred the matter to the Election Commission.
“I did not file this petition because I am a part of any political party. I sent it as a layman. For someone interested in politics, in a city like Delhi, it is impossible to avoid it. I realised something was amiss. After doing research, I found the move to be unconstitutional and filed a plea with the President’s secretariat,” he said. As news broke that the EC had recommendation disqualifying of the MLAs, Patel spent most of Friday afternoon fielding questions from the media.
Patel was born in Fatehpur and finished his education from Saraswati Vidya Mandir in Jahanabad. He later went to Allahabad University for his graduation in computer applications and physics, and did his postgraduation from Noida’s Footwear Design and Development Institute. He finished his LLB from Chaudhary Charan Singh University in Greater Noida.
His first brush with fame came in 2014. As part of the Hindu Legal Cell he had filed case against PK, alleging that it showed Hindus in poor light. He is also active in the social media and he says that he has been “instrumental in raising various social issues that have an impact on society”.