SC notice to Centre on multi-seat candidates

The Supreme Court on Friday sought response from Centre and the Election Commission (EC) on a public interest litigation seeking cancellation of nomination papers of the candidates who contested from two constituencies in a legislative body.

A bench of Chief Justice P Sathasivam and Justice N V Ramana issued notice to the Union government and the poll panel on the petition filed by advocate H K Naik.

The court, however, refused to issue any immediate direction on the plea of the petitioner that there should be direction to candidates against contesting from more than two seats.

The petitioner urged the court to issue a direction that Section 70 of the Representation of Peoples Act was ultra-vires to the Constitution.

He also wanted a direction to the EC to ensure that candidates would file affidavit stating they were not contesting from more than one constituency.

According to Section 70 of the Representation of Peoples Act: “If a person is elected to more than one seat in either House of Parliament or either House of the Legislature of a State, then, unless within the prescribed time he resigns all but one of the seats [by writing under his hand addressed to the Speaker or Chairman, as the case may be, or to such other authority or officer as may be prescribed], all the seats shall become vacant.”

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