Decide in 10 Days AIADMK Representation to Update Amended Bye-Laws: Delhi HC to ECI

The Delhi High Court on Wednesday asked the Election Commission of India (ECI) to decide within 10 days a representation by the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK) to update in its record the party’s amended bye-laws.

The order was passed by Justice Purushaindra Kumar Kaurav on a petition filed by the AIADMK and its interim general secretary Thiru K Palaniswamy, which claimed that the records of the party were not being updated owing to certain internal disputes pending in the party.

Lawyer Sidhant Kumar, appearing on behalf of the ECI, said the representation made by the petitioner on the issue was being actively considered and a final decision would be taken within 10 days.

“In view of the stand by the ECI, the court deems it appropriate to dispose of the petition with a direction to the ECI to decide the representation of the petitioner within 10 days,” ordered the judge.

Senior advocate Mukul Rohatgi, representing the petitioner, urged that the representation be decided by Monday as any further delay would adversely impact the upcoming elections in Karnataka.

Nomination in Karnataka will be a problem, the senior lawyer said.

The court, however, said it cannot force the election body to take a decision.

“We can’t direct them. We can request them. We can’t force them,” the court responded.

The counsel for the ECI said the authority will consider the request, if possible.

Senior counsel for O Panneerselvam also appeared before the court, saying he was the party coordinator and should be allowed to participate in the proceedings before any relief is granted to the petitioner.

Senior advocate S Gurukrishna Kumar, for Panneerselvam, said the cause of action arose in Chennai and the plea cannot be filed in Delhi.

While clarifying that all contentions of the parties were left open, the court said Panneerselvam has the liberty to raise his grievances before the authorities.

“The EC is bound to hear you also. You can also make a representation… we are not saying anything. The EC will consider and decide in 10 days,” the court stated.

The petition, filed through advocates Balaji Srinivasan, K Gowtham Kumar and Shiva Krishnamurti, had sought to direct the ECI to consider the representations made by the petitioners and upload the latest amended bye-laws of July 11, 2022 of the party in its records.

It asserted that not updating the records is contrary to the various settled legal principles and the earlier stand of the ECI taken by it in relation to the party.

“The inaction of the ECI has grossly violated the Article 19(1)(c) of the petitioners as petitioner no. 1 (AIADMK) is an association of persons and owing to the inaction of ECI, the petitioner no. 1 is not able to effectively carry out its functions which is the dire need of the hour especially owing to the fast approaching General Assembly Elections to Lok Sabha,” the petition said.

It emphasised that the ECI has recently announced the schedule for election in state of Karnataka for May 10 and the last date of filing nomination is April 20 and the party puts up its candidates regularly in some of the constituencies in Karnataka and in the past, its candidate has won thrice from Kolar constituency.

Without the ECI updating its records and uploading the amended bylaws, the AIADMK will not be able to put up a valid contestant in these constituencies and the party would go unrepresented, which will cause an irreparable injury, the plea stated.

“Such a conduct on the part of ECI will seriously impact the democratic fabric as a recognised political party having significant presence in the State of Karnataka, will be unable to participate in the elections to the legislative assembly,” the plea said.

It said the inaction will only cause severe disruption of the activities of the party which will in turn have a serious bearing on the democratic principles of the nation.

“The inaction of ECI is causing grave prejudice and hardship not only to the AIADMK but also to the primary members of AIADMK and entire citizenry of State of Tamil Nadu for the reason that absolute strangers to the AIADMK are representing themselves as coordinators and other office bearers of party. They are also appointing various unknown persons to the posts of AIADMK and such impersonation cannot be allowed in a vibrant democracy,” it said.

Related Articles

Latest Articles