HC declines to dismiss case against Bellary MP

Shantha had filed three applications –– one for dismissal of the petition against her, another for deletion of pleadings in the petition and one more seeking deletion of names of three of the respondents.

While rejecting the first two applications, Justice H Billappa observed the applications were filed only to protract the case. However, he allowed her application seeking deletion of the names of three respondents.

M Chandregowda, a Congress worker had filed a petition seeking disqualification of Shantha as MP on the ground that irregularities were committed during poll campaign and that false caste certificate had been produced. He had contended that Shantha belonged to Boya community, considered backward in Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. Since Bellary is a constituency reserved for Scheduled Tribes (ST), the petitioner alleged that Shantha had obtained a false caste certificate in Karnataka stating that she belongs to Valmiki community, which is categorised as Scheduled Tribe only in Karnataka.

In her application seeking dismissal of the election petition, Shantha stated that the petitioner could not prove his allegations on distribution of money and liquor. The Court, however, was satisfied with the evidence that had been provided and refused to dismiss the petition. It also rejected another application seeking deletion of pleadings in the petition.

However, the Court permitted to delete the names of Venkateshulu, B Mallikarjunaiah and Returning Officer (Deputy Commissioner) as respondents. The matter was adjourned to August 10.

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