The High Court of Karnataka has scheduled a hearing for July 28 to address a petition challenging the election of Chief Minister Siddaramaiah to the Assembly from the Varuna constituency.
The petition in question accuses the Congress party’s election manifesto of promoting five ‘guarantees,’ which it deems as ‘corrupt practices amounting to bribery and undue influence’ under Section 123(2) of the Representation of the People Act.
According to the petition, Siddaramaiah allegedly violated provisions of the Constitution and the rules and guidelines under The Representation of the People Act.
“The said guarantees are in the nature of offer and promises made by the candidate and by the Indian National Congress party. This was done with the consent of the respondent (Siddaramaiah). They are in the form of gratification to the electorate of Varuna Constituency and with the object of directly inducing the electorate to vote for the Congress party candidate, namely the respondent. The consideration was the vote in favor of the Respondent as a gratification with the motive and reward,” states the petition.
The Election petition was filed by KM Shankara, a private citizen from the constituency, and was brought before Justice S Sunil Dutt Yadav, the single-judge bench.
The petition alleges that during the recently concluded Assembly Elections, Siddaramaiah indulged in corrupt practices, leading to the filing of this legal challenge.
Pramila Nesargi, a senior advocate representing the petitioner, argued in court that all those who sought votes based on the five guarantees in the election manifesto were guilty of violating the model code of conduct. However, Siddaramaiah has been singled out as a respondent in this instance.
The high court adjourned the hearing, directing the petitioner to address the office objections raised against the petition before the scheduled date. The case holds significance, and the outcome could have implications on the Chief Minister’s political standing.
Sources By Agencies