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  India   All India  13 Oct 2018  Congress leaders’ plea on bogus voters rejected

Congress leaders’ plea on bogus voters rejected

THE ASIAN AGE. | J. VENKATESAN
Published : Oct 13, 2018, 12:44 am IST
Updated : Oct 13, 2018, 12:44 am IST

The petitioners pointed out that while there are over 60 lakh bogus voters in Madhya Pradesh, there are one crore bogus voters in Rajasthan.

Supreme Court
 Supreme Court

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Friday dismissed petitions filed by Congress leaders Kamal Nath and Sachin Pilot alleging large scale bogus or fake votes in the voters list for the two States of Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan going to Assembly polls in November/December.

A Bench of Justices A.K. Sikri and Ashok Bhushan rejected the petitions holding that the averments made in the petitions were incorrect as deletion or inclusion of voters in the voters list had been done by the Election Commission of India (ECI) in accordance with the law. The Bench also rejected the plea on VVPAT as the SC had alredy decided the issue and given liberty to the EC to take a decision.  

Justice Sikri who wrote the judgment said, “There is no doubt about the bona fides of the ECI. It is a matter of record that in the last 25-30 years, ECI has built up the reputation of an impartial body, which strives to hold fair elections. It is a Constitut-ional Authority and has been discharging its functions quite satisfactorily. People of this country, by and large, trust this institution for its impartial manner of discharging its functions.”

The bench said it is absolutely essential as well in a democratic polity where ‘We, the people’ elect the representatives to the legislative assemblies of the State as well as Parliament.

On the question of supplying electoral rolls as a soft word copy, the Judges said, “Clause 11.2.2.2 of the Election Manual uses the expression ‘text mode’. The draft electoral roll in that mode, i.e. text mode, has been supplied to the petitioner. The clause nowhere says that the draft electoral roll has to be put up on the Chief Electoral Officer’s website in a ‘searchable PDF’. Therefore, the petitioner cannot claim, as a right, that the draft electoral roll should be placed on the website in a ‘searchable mode’.  It has only to be in ‘text mode’ and it is so provided.

Both Kamal Nath and Sachin Pilot sought deletion of large-scale bogus voters in the voters list for Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. The petitioners pointed out that while there are over 60 lakh bogus voters in Madhya Pradesh, there are one crore bogus voters in Rajasthan.

Tags: supreme court, kamal nath, sachin pilot