Wednesday, July 24, 2024

SC dismisses plea challenging Jyotiraditya Scindia’s election to Rajya Sabha

The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed a plea challenging the election of Union Civil Aviation and Steel Minister Jyotiraditya M. Scindia to the Rajya Sabha from Madhya Pradesh in 2020

A bench of Justices Hrishikesh Roy and Sanjay Karol observed that no case for interference was made out in the special leave petition filed by Congress leader Govind Singh against an order of the Madhya Pradesh High Court refusing to review its decision of framing the preliminary issue in the election petition filed against Scindia.

Singh has challenged the candidature of Scindia as a candidate of the BJP from Madhya Pradesh in the biennial election for Rajya Sabha held on June 19, 2020, on the ground that while submitting the nomination paper along with an affidavit, the BJP leader did not disclose particulars or information regarding registration of an FIR lodged against him and others in Bhopal.

It was contended that Scindia had suppressed the facts by not disclosing the FIR in his nomination form which amounts to fraud and corrupt practice and his election be declared as null and void.

The Representation of the People Act, 1951 makes it mandatory for the contesting candidate to disclose all correct details in the nomination form supported by an affidavit.

The plea filed before the apex court argued that the high court refused to review its order of framing a preliminary issue in the election petition as to whether mere registration of an FIR constitutes a “pending criminal case” liable to be disclosed in the nomination papers of a prospective candidate under the Representation of the People Act, 1951.

On July 7 this year, the Supreme Court had refused to entertain another special leave petition filed by Singh against the main order of the high court framing a preliminary issue in the election petition. On the other hand, Scindia had contended before the high court that there was no criminal case pending against him and mere registration of FIR does not fall within the purview of a pending criminal case.

In September 2018, an FIR for offences punishable under Sections 465, 468, 469, 471, 472, 474 and 120-B of IPC was registered against Scindia and others at Shyamla Hills police station in Bhopal on the direction of a special judge. Scindia, through Karanjawala & Co., appeared on ‘caveat’ before the Supreme Court in the matter.

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