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The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidate from New Delhi’s South Delhi constituency, Raghav Chadha has moved the Delhi High Court challenging the election of the winning candidate, BJP leader Ramesh Bidhuri in the 17th Lok Sabha Elections.
In his petition filed through R Arunadhri Iyer, Raghav Chadha has also sought to be declared as the successful candidate from the South Delhi constituency.
It is Chadha’s case that while filing his nomination, Bhiduri wilfully and intentionally concealed the factum of registration of an FIR against him in Muzaffarpur, Bihar, for the commission of offences under Sections 504, 506, 153 and 153(a) of the Indian Penal Code, 1860, thus failing to comply with the requirements of publication of the criminal antecedents under the law.
By not fully disclosing and or publicising the particulars of his criminal antecedents, Bhiduri has committed the corrupt practice of undue influence in the exercise of electoral rights of the citizens of the National Capital Territory of Delhi, the petition claims.
It is also alleged that Bhiduri ex facie declared false incomes in respect of his income, his spouse’s income, as well as the income of his dependant.
The Court is informed that Chadha had raised the above objections with respect to the nomination paper filed by Bhiduri before the Returning Officer. However, after Bhiduri asserted that the antecedents of his criminal record would be published, the Returning Officer “arbitrarily rejected” the objections raised by Chadha and accepted Bhiduri’s nomination.
Chadha, therefore, argues that the Returning Officer erred in accepting the nomination of the Bhiduri in spite of willful and intentional failure to comply with the mandates of the Representation of the People Act, the Rules made thereunder as well as the directions of the Supreme Court of India in a series of judgments.
Invoking the citizens’ Fundamental Right to information about the election candidates and right to free and fair elections, Chadha has thus sought to set aside the election result declaring Bhiduri as the successful candidate from South Delhi constituency.
In return, Chadha has sought to be declared as the “duly elected” candidate from South Delhi as he had secured the next highest tally of votes.
The matter would be taken up on Friday, July 4.