Telengana HC dismisses Minister’s plea on election

Telangana High Court

Telangana High Court | Photo Credit: Nagara Gopal

Justice K. Lakshman of Telangana High Court on Tuesday dismissed the rejection petition filed by Minister for Scheduled Caste Development Koppula Eshwar in response to an election petition seeking to set aside his election from Dharmapuri constituency in 2018.

The election petition was filed by Congress nominee from Dharmapuri Adluri Laxman Kumar who lost to Mr. Eshwar with 441 votes. Eshwar of ruling TRS and Laxman of Congress secured 70,579 votes and 70,138 respectively in that election held in 2018.

While the election results were declared on December 11, 208, a month later the Congress candidate filed an election petition in the High Court seeking a direction to set aside Mr. Eshwar’s election. The Congress candidate contended that the election authorities depended on VVPAT (Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trial) slips to count the votes stating that three Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) failed.

The petitioner argued that he raised objection over authorities depending on VVPAT slips to decide the election result and sought to know precise reasons for the EVMs failure. But the authorities did not respond to the objections, he contended. The HC issued notices to Mr. Eshwar in the matter.

However, Mr. Eshwar did not file any counter affidavit. Meanwhile, the HC in November, 2020 instructed Mr. Eshwar to file reply within a month. But the Minister filed a rejection petition requesting the HC to dismiss the election petition filed by Congress nominee who filed a counter affidavit.

Final arguments were presented by counsel of the two candidates in April. Justice K. Lakshman pronounced the verdict dismissing the rejection petition filed by the Minister. The election petition is likely to be heard eventually.

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Printable version | Aug 3, 2022 12:08:20 am |