SC STAYS THE RULING OF GUJRAT HC DECLARING THE ELECTION OF FORMER STATE LAW MINISTER BHUPENDRASINH CHUDASAMA AS VOID.
A Bench headed by Justice Mohan M Shantanagoudar also issued notice in the plea filed by Chudasama against the High Court judgment passed on 12th May.
Senior Advocates Harish Salve and Neeraj Kishan Kaul appeared for Chudasama before the Supreme Court via video conferencing.
On May 13, just a day after the Gujarat HC quashed his December 2017 election to the state’s Legislative Assembly, Chudasama had moved the SC in appeal.
The appleal under Section-116A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951has stated that the High Court did not consider that as far as illegal rejection of 429 postal ballots is concerned, Rule 54-A of the Conduct of Election Rules, 1961 clearly draws a distinction between postal ballot and vote.
Before the HC, Rathod contested the validity of the election results, contending that 429 postal ballot papers had illegally been excluded from consideration during the vote count by Returning Officer Dhaval Jani. Rathod argued that election records were also tampered with to conceal this manipulation.
While setting aside the election of Chudasama as being void under several provisions of the Representation of People Act, the High Court stated that the result of the election, insofar as it concerns Chudasama, has been materially affected by the “illegal rejection” of 429 votes.