New Delhi, Jan 30 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Thursday stayed the proceedings initiated in the Madras High Court challenging the election of DMK leader Kanimozhi Karunanidhi from Thoothukudi constituency in Tamil Nadu. The proceedings were based on allegation stating concealment of PAN card details of her husband.
A bench headed by Chief Justice S.A. Bobde and comprising Justices B.R. Gavai and Surya Kant issued notice to those who challenged her election. Kanimozhi had moved the top court against the proceedings in the High Court. She was represented by senior advocate P. Wilson and advocate Joseph Aristotle.
On December 9, the apex court had refused to stay the proceedings before the High Court. “Having heard the counsel appearing for the parties, we direct that until further orders, the operation of the impugned judgment and order dated November 19, 2019 passed by the High Court of Judicature at Madras in Original Application Nos…in Election Petition No.3 of 2019 and the further proceedings in Election Petition shall remain stayed,” said court.
The court will conduct further hearing on the matter after four weeks.
The High Court had rejected Kanimozhi’s plea seeking dismissal of two election petitions filed separately — one by a voter and the other by a BJP leader. The High Court had observed that the petition should reach its logical end.
The petition has alleged Kanimozhi did not mention the PAN (Permanent Account Number) of her husband while stating family assets in her election affidavit. Kanimozhi countered that her husband is an NRI living in Singapore and he neither possessed a PAN card nor does he pay any income tax in India.
Kanimozhi had defeated BJP’s Tamilisai Soundararajan, who is now Governor of Telangana. Tamilisai withdrew the plea after becoming Governor of Telangana.
The High Court observed the petitioner must be given a chance to gather evidence supporting his claim of improper acceptance of nomination.
Kanimozhi contested from the Thoothukudi constituency in 2019 and won by a historic margin. Her election was challenged by a voter, A Sanathana Kumar.