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CPI(M) to intervene in SC hearing on use of religion in polls

The apex court had on Wednesday raised the question whether seeking of votes on the basis of religion, caste or tribe would amount to "corrupt practice" under the election law.

By: PTI | New Delhi | Published: October 27, 2016 5:37 pm
Supreme court, CPI(M), CPIM, communist party of india, supreme court hearing, intervene SC hearing, india news, indian express Supreme Court of India.

The CPI(M) on Thursday became the first political party to intervene in the ongoing Supreme Court hearing on whether seeking votes in the name of religion or caste amounted to “corrupt practices” under the Representation of the People’s (RP) Act. The party filed an application for intervention, through its General Secretary Sitaram Yechury, saying it was an interested party in the case as it had considerable stake in the democratic electoral process of the country. The case is being heard by a seven-member Constitution bench.

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“It is respectfully submitted that since this Court is considering the interpretation of Section 123(3) and (3A) of the Representation of People’s Act, the applicant, which actively participates in democratic process of this country, is seeking kind indulgence of this Court to present its views in the interest of justice,” the petition said.

“The applicant herein is an interested party in the civil appeal as it has a considerable stake in the democratic elctoral process of this country,” it said.

The CPI(M), in its plea, also submitted that it believed in secularism and quoted its Programme saying it was committed to wage an “uncompromising struggle” for the consistent implementation of the principles of secularism.

“While defending the right of every religious community -whether it is the majority or the minorities, as well as those who have no faith in any religion to believe in and practice any religion or none at all, the Party should fight against all forms of intrusion of religion in the economic, political and administrative life of the nation and uphold secular and democratic values in culture, education and society,” the plea quoted the Party Programme as saying.

The apex court had on Wednesday raised the question whether seeking of votes on the basis of religion, caste or tribe would amount to “corrupt practice” under the election law.

In its petition to the apex court, the CPI(M) said “the threat to the secular foundations has become menacing with the rise of the communal and fascistic RSS-led combine and its assuming power at the Centre. Systematic efforts are on to communalise the institutions of the state, the administration, the educational system and the media.”

The CPI(M) said “the growth of majority communalism will strengthen the forces of minority communalism and endanger national unity” and is fraught with serious consequenses for democracy and secularism in the country. Social activist Teesta Setalvad had earlier sought to intervene in the matter with an application stating that religion and politics should not be mixed and a direction be passed to de-link religion from politics.

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  1. M
    mahendra patel
    Oct 27, 2016 at 3:29 pm
    Yature is blind and brainless communist of no value in modern days world.Why RSS BJP are communal And muslim parties who openly seeks vote and asks their votes in the name of religion to black mail parties to support them for their votesmunist parties,congress,bsp, jdu,all are communal and do votebank politics.
    1. Narasimha Prakash
      Oct 27, 2016 at 2:00 pm
      Communism is in itself a poisonous religion. When communism is reduced to rubble around the world, only in India these fellows are surviving and keep making noise..
      1. Anand Ch
        Oct 27, 2016 at 1:24 pm
        Every party is seriously considering how to implicate BJP in this case and get it derecognised. Nothing will succeed as every party is equally guilty of supporting one section or the other in the name of religion including CPM. There are some parties which have sprung on caste basis and some on language basis. What about that ? Just stop this non value adding effort and do some thing useful.
        1. M
          Oct 29, 2016 at 10:04 am
          Timely intervention by a good party to prevent people from religious, castiest parties whether majority or minority. Selling public sector industries for cheap rates, unwilling to control price rise, unwilling to recover thousands of crores of rupees from corporates cheating banks. Why top leaders of ruling party take no action in two years.