MP HC | Plea for postponement of Rajya Sabha elections held non-maintainable; Court dismisses petition

Madhya Pradesh High Court: A Division Bench of Ajay Kumar Mittal, CJ and Vijay Kumar Shukla, J., dismissed the Public Interest Litigation  for postponement of elections to the three vacancies of the state in the Rajya Sabha, on the ground of maintainability.

The Election Commission had announced that the Poll for three vacancies of the state of MP in the Rajya Sabha will be held on June 19, 2020. Petitioner’s Counsel Abhinav Dhanodkar, had submitted that more than 1/10th of the house will not be represented in the election, if the 24 seats lying vacant in the State Legislative Assembly were not filled up. He had asserted that as per Section 152 of the Representation of People Act, members of the Legislative Assembly will be electors i.e. representing 230 constituencies. However in this case, 24 constituents would be deprived of their rights or representation and the voting by the members will make sufficient difference in the result of the poll. The Standing counsel for the respondents Mr.  Siddharth Seth, argued that in case, there was violation of any statutory right, the petitioner would have a remedy of filing an “election petition” raising all the issues and contentions therein and the petitioner was neither a voter in the elections to be conducted for Rajya Sabha nor any statutory right of the petitioner had been violated.

The Division Bench concurred with the preliminary submissions put forth by the Commission on the ground of maintainability. It observed that the grounds urged by the Petitioner for deferment of the elections do not create any justification to “bypass” the mandate of Article 329 (b) of the Constitution. The Court while dismissing the petition held that they decline to entertain the present writ petition leaving it open to the petitioner to take recourse to the remedy, as may be available to him, in accordance with law.[Aman Sharma v. Chief Election Commissioner, 2020 SCC OnLine MP 1257 , decided on 17-06-2020]

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