The Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to interfere with the Election Commission’s separate notification for bypolls on two Rajya Sabha seats from Gujarat, ruling that the courts could not intervene once the poll panel issues the order.
Pareshbhai Dhanani, Congress MLA from Amreli and Leader of Opposition in Gujarat Assembly, had asked the top court to order the poll panel to hold the bypolls simultaneously.
The Congress saw a chance of winning one Rajya Sabha seat if the election to both the seats were held together. The Congress has 71 members in the 182-member Gujarat Assembly while the BJP has 104. Seven seats are vacant.
The Congress alleged that the poll body–by notifying separate elections –had adopted a new method of conducting elections and was acting under pressure.
The Election Commission of India in its reply had opposed any interference by the Supreme Court in the Gujarat RS bypolls process.
The EC while opposing Gujarat Congress’ petition had argued that once the bypolls were notified the jurisdiction of the courts was barred. The EC had also cited precedents of holding RS bypolls separately along with court endorsements of the past instances.
The seats in Gujarat fell vacant after the elections of Amit Shah and Smriti Irani to the Lok Sabha from Gandhinagar and Amethi, respectively.
External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar was named the BJP candidate, from one of the two Gujarat seats on which bypolls will be held on July 5.
Jun 25, 2019 11:48 IST
Supreme Court refuses to interfere with EC notification on separate Rajya Sabha bypolls on 2 Gujarat seats – Hindustan Times