HC grants 2 weeks to MHA for reply on Anantnag by-poll
SRINAGAR, Nov 23: The High Court today granted two weeks time to Union Ministry of Home Affairs for reply in a plea for holding by-election for Anantnag Parliamentary constituency.
Justice Tashi Rabstan sought reply from Union Ministry of Home Affairs Government of India as its counsel Tahir Majid Shamshi (ASGI), submitted before the Court that the reply of Ministry is important and sought grant of time for it.
The petition filed by one Ghulam Mohammad Wani of Pulwama has sought direction on the authorities to hold by-election for Anantnag Parliamentary seat as early as possible.
Wani, who was the candidate for Parliamentary elections for the seat from All J&K Kissan Mazdoor Party, had challanged the inaction of the Union Government for failing to conduct Parliamentary by-election for Anantnag seat.
“The inaction of the respondents have denied the sizable population of their basic right of participation in democracy and the petitioner of his right to contest for the House of People. Respondents have failed to follow the procedure laid down by the law on the point,” he submitted.
He further submitted that by-election for the vacancy should have been conducted within 6 months from the date of vacancy.
However, Chief Electoral Officer, who is also party in the writ petition has informed the court that due to prevailing law & order situation in Kashmir valley, the Election Commission of India has rescinded by by-election for Anantnag Parliamentary constituency. Replying to the contention of writ petition Chief Electoral Officer, in his reply submitted that ECI in Exercise of its powers under article 324 of Constitution rescinded by Bye-election due to law and order situation.
Commission had issued notification in the month of March for holding by-election to fill a casual vacancy occurred in Lok Sabha from Anantnag due to resignation of Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti as the MP.
Six candidates including Ghulam Ahmad Mir of INC, Mufti Tasaduq for PDP, Sanjay Kumar Dhar for Rashtriya Samajwadi Party, petitioner-Gh Mohammad Wani, Rakesh Koul-Independent and Sajad Ahmad Dar-Independent were in the fray.