PIL filed Before Madhya Pradesh High Court Seeks Postponement of Rajya Sabha Elections

On Monday 15th June, Dr. Aman Sharma filed a PIL before the Madhya Pradesh High Court demanding the postponement of elections in the three vacancies of the state in Rajya Sabha; and about the vacancies in the State Legislative Assembly. The petitioner, Dr. Aman Sharma, a resident of Indore is the petitioner. Advocate Abhinav Dhanodkar represented him before the court.

Earlier, the Election Commission announced that they will hold the Poll for the three vacancies of MP state in Rajya Sabha on 19th June 2020. The petitioner states that more than 1/10th of the house won’t have representation in the election if the commission does not primarily fill up the 24 vacant seats in the State Legislative Assembly.

Moreover, referring to Section 152 of the Representation of People Act, he states that members of the Legislative Assembly will be the electors i.e. representing 230 constituencies. But in this situation, 24 constituents won’t be able to exercise their rights or representation. Besides, the votes of the members will bring a sufficient difference in the Poll’s results.

Non-representation of the 24 members deprives them of their right to vote

Para IV of the said petition reads as:

“The vacancies are more than 1/10 of the total number of members. The sufficient quota is the basis for further counting and declaration of results. Thus 24 members of the Assembly will not be able to exercise their right to vote. Eventually, it will affect the result on account of vacancies. Thus the elections will not be fair.” 

In furtherance of this, the plea states that vote-count for the Commission to fill more than one seat is governed under Rule 76 to 81 of the Code of Election Rules, 1961. Under this, each valid ballot paper is of value 100 and valid ballot paper has the first preference.

“The number of electors is 230. Therefore the total value will be 23000. If it is divided by 8 and one is added then the sufficient quota will be 2886. There are 24 vacancies, therefore the number of electors will be reduced to 207×100 i.e. 20700. And if 8 is divided and one is added, then it comes to 2813. As a result, the entire basis for counting will be erroneous”, states the plea.

The plea highlighted that the election commission must have taken necessary steps to fill the three vacancies from MP by issuing a notification, to avoid the non-representation of 24 constituencies. As apropos to Section 151-A of the RP Act, the commission should hold the elections within 6 months from the occurrence of vacancies. Therefore, the petition demands deference in the election to all three vacant seats of Rajya Sabha.  It demands the Election Commission to first fill the 24 vacant seats in the Legislative Assembly.