The Election Commission of India had announced that the elections for three vacancies would be held on June 19 for Rajya Sabha seats. The Madhya Pradesh High Court refused to entertain a petition seeking deferment of elections for three vacant Rajya Sabha seats of the state.
The Bench of Chief Justice Ajay Kumar Mittal and Justice Vijay Kumar Shukla postponed the Rajya Sabha polls for three vacant seats in the state on grounds that the state assembly is not currently at full strength, since 24 seats were vacant.
The 24 constituents would be deprived of their rights or representation and the voting by the members will make sufficient difference in the result of the poll, the petitioner contended.
The petitioner was represented by Senior Advocate A M Mathur and Advocate Abhinav Dhanodkar. Advocate Siddharth Seth appeared for the Election Commission for Rajya sbha seats.
Counsel for Election Commission stated that the writ petition should not be entertained as there is a bar provided under Article 329 (b) of the Constitution of India read with Section 18 and Section 100(1)(d)(iv) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
The Divison Bench went to note that elections/election for Rajya sabha seats disputes are a matter of special nature and right to the office in an election dispute is not a lis at common law nor an action in equity for Rajya sabbha seats.
“…the grounds urged by the learned senior counsel for the petitioner for deferment of the elections for Rajya sabha seats that there has been no application of mind while fixing the date of poll and that earlier the elections for filling of casual vacancies in Legislative Assembly of various States were postponed due to Covid-19 pandemic, do not create any justification to bypass the mandate of Article 329(b) of the Constitution of India in writ jurisdiction of this Court.”