Many HCs Have Divergent Opinions On This; SC Denies Relief In Appeal Seeking Stay On Karnal Assembly By-Poll




The Supreme Court on Friday noted that different High Court’s in the country have divergent opinions on the subject of holding by-elections in constituencies where less than a year is left for assembly elections, simultaneously with Lok Sabha elections.

Division bench of Justice Surya Kant and Justice PS Narsimha were hearing an appeal against an order of the Punjab & Haryana High Court filed by one Kunal Chanana. The High Court had dismissed the plea challenging Election Commission of India’s notification on April 3.

This particular seat of Karnal assembly constituency fell vacant after former Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar resigned in March to pave the way for the newly appointed Chief Minister Nayab Singh Saini. Assembly elections are due to be held in Haryana in either October or November this year.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appeared for the Haryana government and Senior Counsel Maninder Singh and advocate Ankit Agarwal appeared for the ECI. On the other hand, Senior Advocate Mukul Rohatgi appeared for one of the candidates contesting the election.
The Apex Court refused to interfere with the bye-elections however clarified that the question of law would remain open in the said case.

Last month, in a similar case, the Bombay High Court quashed and set aside a similar notification by the Election Commission of India dated March 16, 2024. The said notification was issued for declaration of the by-election for Akola West assembly constituency in April.

The bench at Nagpur has held that since in the said case, the remainder term for any incoming member would be less than a year, the said notification is contrary to Section 151 A of the People’s Representation Act, 1951.

Author: Nitish Kashyap



Interns and Paralegals.


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