A city court has declined an AAP leader’s plea seeking to restrain a BJP candidate who won a south Delhi ward in the recent MCD polls from taking oath as a councillor, saying there was no prima facie case against her victory. The order came on the plea of AAP’s candidate Pinky Tyagi who contested the MCD elections from ward 70-S in Chhattarpur and lost by two votes to BJP’s Anita Tawar.
District and Sessions Judge Asha Menon said, “It is clear as of now that the petitioner (Tyagi) is not the successful candidate. The margin may be two votes but nevertheless, she has been defeated. The respondent (Tawar) is the successful candidate and is entitled to take oath.”
The judge further said there was no prima facie case as the issues raised in the petition, including multiplicity in voter list and casting of votes through postal ballots, required inquiry.
“The questions relating to multiplicity in voter list and casting of votes through postal ballots are matters that require enquiry. Such enquiry will take time. It is clear that Tyagi has failed to disclose a prima facie case as all the issues require further inquiry,” the judge said.
The court, however, said that taking of oath would not cause any irreparable loss and injury to the AAP candidate and she would have full opportunity to establish her case. The matter will be heard on May 31.
It also said if Tyagi succeeded in the election petition, the relief as provided under section 19 of the Delhi Municipal Corporation (DMC) Act, which includes declaring elections of all or the returned candidate to be void, would be available as an option to the court.
Earlier, the court had directed the State Election Commission to keep the EVM machines used in a south Delhi ward in the recent MCD polls intact and in sealed condition on the plea filed by Tyagi, who had bagged 8,413 votes, while Tanwar had received 8,415.
The plea alleged that the BJP candidate filed her nominations after the deadline of 6 pm on April 3, which was denied by the state election commission which said it was filed five minutes before time.
The petition alleged there was improper acceptance of votes and improper refusal to receive votes which furnished sufficient grounds to declare the election void and to refrain the candidate from taking oath.