The Delhi High Court on Monday declined to entertain a PIL seeking directions to the Election Commission (EC) to conduct an enquiry over the BJP’s Rajya Sabha MP from Karnataka, Rajeev Chandrasekhar, allegedly filing a false affidavit with his nomination papers.
A bench of Chief Justice Rajendra Menon and Justice Brijesh Sethi directed the petitioner, a software professional from Bengaluru, to file an election petition instead and dismissed his plea that had also sought directions to the EC to inquire into all complaints made in respect of false affidavits filed by poll candidates. “You should have filed an election petition. Why did you not? We will not hear it. Dismissed,” the court said.
The petitioner, Renjith Thomas, had alleged in his plea that Chandrasekhar had not declared his actual assets in the affidavit filed along with his nomination papers. He had also claimed that when he sent a representation to the EC drawing its attention to the issue, the poll panel sent him a 2014 circular that said any aggrieved person or the returning officer could approach a local criminal court against filing of a false affidavit with nomination papers.
Thomas had contended that the EC’s stand amounted to “abdicating its constitutional duty to conduct free-and-fair elections” and “investigate matters of false affidavits” when a prima facie case was made out against Chandrasekhar.