New Delhi: A leprosy patient cannot contest a civic poll or hold the post of a councillor or chairperson of a municipality, the Supreme Court has ruled.

The verdict upheld the decisions of the Election Tribunal and the Orissa High Court that had upheld the provisions of the Orissa Municipal Act, which disqualifies a leprosy patient from holding such posts.

‘Not discriminatory’

Holding that these provisions are not discriminatory and violative of Article 14 of the Constitution, Justices C.K. Thakker and D.K. Jain said: “We do not find any infirmity or illegality in the judgment warranting interference.”

“… The legislature in its wisdom has thought it fit to retain such provisions in the statute in order to eliminate the danger of the disease being transmitted to other people from the person affected,” it said. – PTI