Expeditious disposal of election petition necessary to sustain purity of parliamentary democracy

Supreme Court: Rejecting the practice of causing delay in the conclusion of the trial of an election petition which leaves an impression that the elected candidate has the skilfulness to enjoy his full term without being concerned or bothered about the challenge to his election, the bench of Dipak Misra and P.C. Pant, JJ held that the same defeats the very object of expeditious disposal of election petition as envisaged in Section 86(7) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 (the Act). The Court said that the fundamental purpose for expeditious disposal of an election petition is to sustain the purity of parliamentary democracy.

Considering the case at hand where the elected candidate has been taking time at his own pleasure and leisure and filing applications as he desired giving vent to his whim and fancy and the Court has granted adjournment in an extremely liberal manner, the Court, going into the legislative intent of the provision in question, said that engrafting a provision in the nature of Section 86(7) of the Act, the legislative intendment is clear that the Court has to endeavour to dispose of an election petition as expeditiously as possible and not to allow the parties to take resort to unnecessary adjournments or file vexatious applications.

Laying emphasis on fundamental values of democracy, the Court said that a voter casts his vote as a responsible citizen to choose the masters for governing the country, hence, it should be election candidate’s sanguine effort to become free from the assail in the election petition and work with attainment and not take shelter seeking adjournments with the elated hope that he can be triumphant in the contest by passage of time. Pukhrem Sharatchandra Singh v. Mairembam Prithviraj,  decided on 01.10.2015

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