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Will check maintainability of plea challenging rejection of Congress' Surat candidate's nomination: Gujarat HC

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Mukesh Dalal was declared a winner of the Surat Lok Sabha seat after Congress candidate Nilesh Kumbhani's nomination was rejected and other candidates withdrew from the race.
Last Updated : 18 June 2024, 17:06 IST

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Ahmedabad: The Gujarat High Court on Tuesday said it will first check the maintainability of the election petition that challenged the returning officer's decision to reject the nomination of the Congress' Surat Lok Sabha candidate.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Mukesh Dalal was declared a winner of the Surat Lok Sabha seat after Congress candidate Nilesh Kumbhani's nomination was rejected and other candidates withdrew from the race.

The court of Justice J C Doshi said a similar election petition has been filed by another voter and not the losing candidates from the given constituency and he will first have to assure himself regarding the maintainability of the petitions.

"If such petitions are entertained, then all the voters will come here...Losing candidate is not here, only voters are here...There is no urgency in this matter," he said, adding that he will need assistance from the assistant government pleader regarding maintainability of the petition.

The court kept the matter for further hearing on July 11.

The election petition was filed by three voters of Surat parliamentary constituency and questions the decision of the returning officer under Section 36 of the Representation of the People Act relating to the scrutiny of the nomination form.

Kalpesh Barot, Firoz Malek and Ashok Pimple have sought the court's direction to quash and set aside the Surat returning officer's decision to reject Congress candidate's nomination form, and hold Dalal's victory as null and void.

Surat, one of the 26 Lok Sabha seats in Gujarat, was won by the BJP candidate uncontested on April 22, the date for withdrawal of the nomination forms.

Elections to 25 seats in Gujarat were held in the third phase on May 7. In the result declared on June 4, BJP won 24 out of these 25 seats while one seat went to Congress.

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Published 18 June 2024, 17:06 IST

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