Hours after the Jharkhand High Court on Thursday directed the Election Commission to seek a CBI probe into the seizure of cash in connection with the Rajya Sabha elections in the state,Chief Election Commissioner S Y Quraishi said he would write to the Ministry of Home Affairs on Monday in this connection.
Hailing the Jharkhand High Court order,Quraishi said: It is a landmark judgment that has strengthened our hands to fight corruption in elections. It is a great milestone. We will be writing to the Home Ministry on Monday for getting the state government to institute a CBI inquiry as directed by the High Court.
Earlier in the day,dismissing a petition by Congress candidate Pradeep Kumar Balmuchu,a bench of Chief Justice Prakash Tatia and Justice A P Singh upheld the ECs decision to countermand the Rajya Sabha polls.
Since it is a grave case of involvement of money power,horse-trading and influence relating to the process of election of Council of States wherein the voters are members of the Legislative Assembly,we deem it proper to direct the EC to hand over the case to the CBI, the Bench said.
The EC had countermanded the Rajya Sabha polls in Jharkhand following the seizure of Rs 2.15 crore from a vehicle belonging to a relative of Independent candidate R K Agrawal. Five candidates were in the fray for the two Rajya Sabha seats in Jharkhand.
While Quraishi said the EC was considering probable dates for the RS polls in Jharkhand,he asserted that the poll panel would not hesitate to act tough if candidates engaged in malpractices. .