Thursday, April 14, 2011

Outgoing Tamil Nadu legislator's election quashed on voting day

New Delhi/Chennai: The Supreme Court on Wednesday set aside the election of P Veldurai, a Congress member of the outgoing Tamil Nadu Assembly, on the day he was contesting the polls for a new house in the state.

An apex court bench of Justice JM Panchal and Justice Gyan Sudha Misra said Veldurai incurred disqualification under the Representation of the People Act on the grounds that on the day of filing his nomination papers in 2006 he had contracts with the state government. Thus, his election was "declared illegal".

Reacting to the verdict, Veldurai, the Congress candidate from Radhapuram in Tamil Nadu's Tirunelveli district in Wednesday's voting, said: "I don't know why I lost the case."

 He said the decision will not impact his chances of getting elected again as the people are in favour of the DMK-led front.

Speaking for the bench Justice Panchal said that the election of Veldurai from Cheranmahadevi constituency is held "null and void".

Velduria's election to the Assembly from Cheranmadevi constituency, 570 km from here, was annulled as he had contracts with the Tamil Nadu government at the time of filing his nomination in 2006, AIADMK Rajya Sabha member and the complainant in the case PH Manoj Pandian said.

Veldurai filed nomination papers for election from Cheranmahadevi Assembly constituency that was held May 8, 2006.

On May 11, 2006, Veldurai was declared elected.

In 2006, Veldurai along with Pandian filed nomination papers from Cheranmahadevi assembly constituency.

In the course of scrutiny of the papers April 21, 2006, Pandian sought the rejection of Veldurai's nomination papers on the grounds that he had a contract with the state government.

Veldurai contended that he had already terminated the contract and was eligible for contesting the election.

Setting aside a Madras High Court verdict, the apex court said: "On the date of submission of nomination papers by respondent (Veldurai) as well as on the date of scrutiny of the nomination papers the contracts entered into by respondent (Veldurai) with the government were subsisting and, therefore, the respondent was disqualified from filing the nomination papers and contesting election."

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