May 21, 2024 05:58 (IST)
Follow us:
facebook-white sharing button
twitter-white sharing button
instagram-white sharing button
youtube-white sharing button
Sambit Patra triggers row calling Lord Jagannath 'Modi bhakt', later clarifies as 'slip of tongue' | AAP claims conspiracy after ED says it got illegal foreign funds | Amitabh and Jaya Bachchan walk out hand-in-hand after casting their votes in Lok Sabha polls | 57.5 pct voting recorded in Phase 5 of LS polls; top politicians including Smriti Irani, Rahul Gandhi in fray | CCTV footage shows Pune teen drinking at bar before Porsche accident that killed 2
Candidates need not disclose details of every moveable property: Supreme Court
LS polls
Photo Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

Candidates need not disclose details of every moveable property: Supreme Court

| @indiablooms | 09 Apr 2024, 11:14 pm

New Delhi/IBNS/UNI: The Supreme Court Tuesday held that candidates contesting elections are not required to disclose every moveable property owned by them or their dependents unless they are of substantial value or reflect a luxurious lifestyle.

A bench comprising Justice Aniruddha Bose and Justice Sanjay Kumar set aside the order of the Gauhati High Court which had declared the election of Karikho Kri as null and void as he had not disclosed three vehicles owned by his wife and son while filing the nomination for contesting the election.

The Supreme Court upheld the election of the Independent MLA Karikho Kri from the Tezu Assembly constituency in Arunachal Pradesh in 2019.

In the election petition filed by the unsuccessful Congress candidate Nuney Tayang, challenging the declaration of the 2019 result in favour of Kri, it was contended by the respondent that Karikho Kri exercised undue influence by not disclosing three vehicles owned by his wife and son while filing the nomination for contesting the election.

The court found that the vehicles were either gifted or sold before the filing of the nomination by Kri, and said that the vehicles could not be considered to be still owned by Kri's wife and son.

“Therefore, the non-disclosure of the three vehicles could not be held against Karikho Kri”, the top court said.

The apex court rejected the respondent's contention that the voters have the right to know is absolute, therefore, Kri must have revealed all particulars. The court said that the non-disclosure of vehicles cannot be held to be a corrupt practice as per Section 123(2) of the Representation of the Peoples Act 1951.

“We are not inclined to accept the blanket proposition that the candidate is required to lay his life out threadbare for examination by the electorate. His right to privacy would still survive as regards matters which are of no concern to the voter or are irrelevant to his candidature for public office. In that respect, the non-disclosure of each and every asset owned by a candidate would not amount to a defect, much less a defect of a substantial character," Justice Sanjay Kumar said.

The court clarified that the high-valued assets owned by them need to be disclosed by the candidate to make the voters know about their lifestyle. It said that there is no "hard and fast" or "straight jacket" rule regarding this and each case would have to be judged on its own facts.

The court ultimately set aside the decision of the High Court declaring the result of Karikho Kri as null and void.

The case pertains to an election petition filed against Karikho Kri, who was elected in the year 2019 as an independent MLA from the Tezu Assembly constituency in Arunachal Pradesh.

The election petition was filed by Congress candidate Nuney Tayang, challenging the declaration of the 2019 result in favour of Kri claiming that he provided inaccurate information in his election nomination papers and failed to disclose in Form 26 of the Conduct of Election Rules, 1961, that he occupied a government-allotted MLA cottage in Itanagar.

Additionally, Tayang asserted that Kri did not furnish "no dues certificates" from relevant departments regarding payments for rent, electricity, water, and telephone charges.

Taking into account Tayang's arguments, the High Court declared the election of Kri as null and Void, which was set aside by the Supreme Court Tuesday.

Support Our Journalism

We cannot do without you.. your contribution supports unbiased journalism

IBNS is not driven by any ism- not wokeism, not racism, not skewed secularism, not hyper right-wing or left liberal ideals, nor by any hardline religious beliefs or hyper nationalism. We want to serve you good old objective news, as they are. We do not judge or preach. We let people decide for themselves. We only try to present factual and well-sourced news.

Support objective journalism for a small contribution.