HC stays rejection of papers of two candidates

Returning Officer passed the order without following principles of natural justice, says court

Justice A. Abhishek Reddy of Telangana High Court on Sunday stayed the order of the Returning Officer of ward No. 125 Gajularamaram rejecting nomination of Congress candidate Kuna Srinivas Goud.

The judge instructed the Returning Officer to accept Srinivas Goud’s nomination and permit him to contest the election. The Returning Officer had rejected Srinvas Goud’s nomination following an affidavit lodged by another contesting candidate Ravula Sheshagiri stating that Mr. Srinivas Goud had three children. The complaint was given on Saturday and the same day the nomination was rejected, without revealing any documentary evidence presented by Ravula Sheshagiri. “The Returning Officer on her own and for the reasons best known to her, has mentioned that she has examined the birth registration date June 6, 2004 and that the same was tallying with the document submitted by Ravula Sheshagiri,” the judge said in his order.

The judge opined that prima facie the Returning Officer did not give an opportunity to Mr. Srinivas Goud to explain his version. No show cause noticewas issued to him. The Returning Officer passed the order without following principles of natural justice and hence stayed, the order said.

The judge also directed the Returning Officer of Ghansibazar ward-49 to accept the nomination of Renu Soni and permit her to contest the election. Ms. Renu Soni moved the court after the Returning Officer rejected her nomination papers.

The judge said the order was without any legal basis and stayed it. Her nomination was rejected on the grounds that she had three children and that she did not belong to BC-B community as she claimed.

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