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Trinamool Congress seeks transfer of Mamata’s poll plea to another bench

Calcutta High Court. File  

The Trinamool Congress on Friday alleged that the judge assigned to hear the election petition filed by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on the Nandigram poll results had links with the BJP, and sought the shifting of the matter to a different bench.

In a letter addressed to the office of Acting Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court Rajesh Bindal, counsel for Ms. Banerjee urged for the “reassignment of the election petition so as to avoid any prejudice and presumption of prejudice against my client”.

Several Trinamool Congress leaders, including party spokesperson Derek O’ Brien, tweeted photographs alleging that Justice Kausik Chanda shared stage with the State BJP president. They also took to social media sharing a list of cases where Justice Chanda appeared as a lawyer representing the BJP.

“Justice Kaushik Chanda is seen sharing a stage with BJP’s @DilipGhoshBJP. Unsurprisingly, he’s also the judge who has been assigned to hear the #Nandigram case. As the Indian Judiciary system gets murkier day by day, will there be any justice in this case? Only time will tell,” the Trinamool Congress tweeted from its official handle.

Responding to the allegations, the BJP’s State unit said the Trinamool Congress was trying to interfere in the judicial process by creating a pressure on the judiciary.

Well known advocate and Rajya Sabha member of the Communist Party of India ( Marxist) Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya said judges took oath under the Constitution, and which parties they represented as lawyers was completely immaterial.

Hearing on Thursday

Earlier in the day, Ms. Banerjee’s petition challenging the election of the BJP’s Suvendu Adhikari from Nandigram was mentioned before the bench of Justice Chanda. Soumendra Nath Mukherjee, counsel for Ms. Banerjee, suggested that the matter be kept for next week. The court agreed to hear the matter on June 24.

Justice Chanda directed that the Registrar shall file a report before this court as to whether the petition has been filed in conformity with the Representation of People Act.

Ms. Banerjee lost the seat with a narrow margin of 1956 votes . Alleging irregularities in the counting process, the Trinamool Congress chairperson had said she will challenge the results before the court.

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Printable version | Jul 25, 2021 6:28:09 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/calcutta-high-court-to-hear-on-june-24-mamata-plea-against-nandigram-result/article34847279.ece

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