New Delhi, Jan 3 (IANS) In a setback to Congress veteran Ahmed Patel, the Supreme Court on Thursday ordered him to face trial in connection with his election to the Rajya Sabha in 2017 which has been challenged by BJP leader Balwantsinh Rajput.
An apex court bench headed by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi declined interfering with a Gujarat High Court order to proceed with the hearing of the petition by Rajput, observing that the allegations require a trial.
Rajput, who lost the polls to Patel, has alleged that the Congress leader had indulged in corrupt practice by lodging 44 MLAs in a hotel in Bengaluru. He had also contested the Election Commission’s decision to invalidate two votes by Congress MLAs — Raghavji Patel and Bholabhai Gohel — who had rebelled against the party.
Patel, a close aide of UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, won a fifth term in the Rajya Sabha from Gujarat in 2017 in a bitterly fought election.