Special Correspondent

"Petitioner failed to prove that there was improper acceptance of the nomination"

CHENNAI: The Madras High Court on Tuesday declined to set aside the election of Indian Union Muslim League Tamil Nadu president K.M. Khader Mohideen from the Vellore Lok Sabha constituency on Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) ticket.

Dismissing a petition seeking to declare the election invalid and void, Justice M. Chockalingam said petitioner G.S. Iqbal failed to prove that there was improper acceptance of the nomination of Mr. Mohideen for the May 2004 election.

Mr. Mohideen defeated his AIADMK rival P. Santhanam by 1.78 lakh votes.

"Recognised party"

Mr. Iqbal contended that by contesting on DMK symbol, Mr. Mohideen had created confusion in the minds of the electorate, thus materially affecting the outcome.

The IUML was a recognised political party with a reserved symbol in Kerala, but Mr. Mohideen had falsely declared that he was a DMK nominee.

"It was an absolute falsehood, and his nomination ought to have been rejected by authorities as it violated Section 13(c) of the Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) Order."

Mr. Justice Chockalingam said no material had been adduced to show that the voter turnout was affected by the declaration.

Political parties faced the election in two pre-poll formations, and "it cannot be said that it was not made known to the public as to which alignment a particular ... party or movement belonged."