Taking up an application moved by Union minister and Rajya Sabha member from Haryana Birender Singh seeking deletion of his name from the election petition filed by senior Supreme Court advocate R K Anand challenging media baron Subhash Chandra’s election to the Rajya Sabha, the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Tuesday issued notice to Anand.
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As the case came up for hearing before the court headed by Justice P B Bajanthri, Birender Singh’s counsel submitted that his election to the Rajya Sabha has nothing to do with the election of Chandra and hence his name should be deleted from the petition.
In the petition filed under the Representation of the the People Act, 1951, Anand has challenged the elections held on June 11 for the two Rajya Sabha seats of Haryana in which Subhash Chandra and Birender Singh were declared as winners. Anand has sought fresh elections to the two Rajya Sabha seats of Haryana or to declare him as elected member of RS.
At the same time, senior supreme court advocate Mohan Jain, appearing for Chandra, submitted that Anand had wrongly impleaded R K Nandal, secretary of Haryana Vidhan Sabha, as one of the respondents in the petition. Jain submitted that Nandal was the returning officer in the Rajya Sabha election and it was a well settled position in law that no person other than the candidate who stood for elections and the returned candidates could be made parties to the election petition.
“There is not even an iota of doubt that the votes were deliberately cast by some of the voters with pen other than which was provided by the Election Commission of Haryana to make their votes invalid, which they did in their own conscious political wisdom,” Chandra has submitted.
He further argued that Anand’s petition deserved to be dismissed on the ground that it was well settled that the polling officer need not hand over to every voter individually a pen to mark his vote as claimed by Anand. Chandra also added that another ground for dismissal of Anand’s petition is that it was not permissible for the High Court to permit a party to seek a roving enquiry.
Petitioner Anand has submitted he had learnt through reliable sources that Chandra had met the returning officer at the Vidhan Sabha in the presence of several people a day before the June 11 election.