Orissa High Court: In an application under Article 226 and 227 of the Constitution of India, the applicant was seeking to set aside the Sarpanch election of opposite party for being disqualified on grounds of having more than two children, B.P. Routray, J. dismissed the petition as the opposite party had only two children on the date of filing of the nomination.
In the matter at hand, the applicant is an unsuccessful election petitioner as the election petitions filed before the Civil Judge, First Court, Cuttack was dismissed and the election appeal before the District Judge, Cuttack was also dismissed. The applicant’s case was that since the opposite had three children on the date of filing of the nomination for the post of Sarpanch, Nakhara Gram Panchayat, he was disqualified from contesting as Sarpanch in terms of the provisions contained in Section 25(1)(v) of the Odisha Gram Panchayats Act, 1964.
The question for consideration in the election petition was ‘whether the election of the opposite party for the post of Sarpanch, Nakhara Gram Panchayat was void as he has more than two children and his nomination paper was improperly accepted by the election officer?’
The Court noted that opposite party had three children, however, one of the children died on 01-08-2008. Therefore, the Court said that one of the children was already dead on the date of the nomination of the opposite party. Further, the Court perused Section 25(1)(v) of the Act which provides for disqualification for membership of Grama Panchayat for having more than two children. The Court said that it is clear from the provision that the person contesting for the office of Sarpanch should not have more than two children on the date of filing of nomination and the present matter the opposite party did not have more than two children on the date of filing of the nomination as one of the children was dead.
Thus, the Court dismissed the application.
[Sri Trailokyanath Swain v. Pabitra, 2023 SCC OnLine Ori 6020, Decided on: 13-10-2023]