38.6c New Delhi, India, Friday, May 24, 2024
Judiciary

Each moveable property not required to be disclosed by candidates in election: SC [Read Judgment]

By Jhanak Singh      10 April, 2024 12:02 PM      0 Comments
Each moveable property not required to be disclosed by candidates in election SC

NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Tuesday held non-disclosure of each and every asset owned by a candidate would not amount to a defect, much less, a defect of a substantial character.

The top court that it was not mandatory for a candidate in election to disclose each moveable asset held by him or family, as the voter's right to know is not absolute.

A bench of Justices Aniruddha Bose and Sanjay Kumar said it is not necessary that a candidate in an election must declare every item of movable property that he or his dependent family members owned, such as, clothing, shoes, crockery, stationery and furniture, etc, unless the item is of such value as to constitute a sizeable asset in itself or reflect upon his candidature, in terms of his lifestyle.

"We are not inclined to accept the blanket proposition that a candidate is required to lay his life out threadbare for examination by the electorate. His ‘right to privacy’ would still survive as regards matters which are of no concern to the voter or are irrelevant to his candidature for public office," the bench said.

The bench set aside July 17, 2023 judgment of Itanagar bench of High Court of Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh, which held 2019 election of Karikho Kri as independent MLA from Tezu (ST) Assembly Constituency, as void, on a petition by Congress candidate Nuney Tayang.

The HC found Kri did not disclose vehicles namely Kinetic Zing Scooty, Maruti Omni Van, and TVS Star City Motorcycle.

"Such non-disclosure cannot, by any stretch of imagination, be treated as an attempt on his part to unduly influence the voters, thereby inviting the wrath of Section 123(2) of the Representation of People Act of 1951," the bench said.

The court pointed out Kri had declared the value of the movable assets of his dependent family members and himself as Rs 8,41,87,815.

The value of the three vehicles in question, by comparison, would be a mere miniscule of this figure, which could not be said to amount to ‘undue influence’, the bench said.

The court said every case would have to turn on its own peculiarities and there can be no hard and fast or straitjacketed rule as to when the non-disclosure of a particular movable asset by a candidate would amount to a defect of a substantial character.

The bench said a candidate and his family who own several high-priced watches, which would aggregate to a huge figure in terms of monetary value, would obviously have to disclose those as they constitute an asset of high value and also reflect upon his lavish lifestyle.

However, if a candidate and his family members each own a simple watch, not highly priced, suppression of the value of such watches may not amount to a defect at all. Each case would, therefore, have to be judged on its own facts, the bench said.

In the case, the High Court had found that the nomination of Kri was improperly accepted by the returning officer as he had failed to disclose the three vehicles in question, which continued to be registered in the name of his dependent family members.

Besides, non-submission of the ‘No Dues Certificate’ in respect of the government accommodation occupied by him during his earlier tenure as an MLA was also held to weigh against him.

The High Court also held that non-disclosure of the taxes due and payable by Kri and his wife was a defect of substantial character and the same tainted his nomination.

The election petition was filed by the then Congress candidate, Nuney Tayang, challenging the declaration of the 2019 assembly election result.

The court also said the failure on the part of Kri to disclose the dues of municipal/property taxes payable by him and his wife, the same cannot be held to be a non-disclosure at all.

“We hold that the High Court was in error in concluding that sufficient grounds were made out under Sections 100(1)(b), 100(1)(d)(i) and 100(1)(d)(iv) of the Act of 1951 to invalidate the election of Kri and, further, in holding that non-disclosure of the three vehicles, that still remained registered in the names of his wife and son as on the date of filing of his nomination, amounted to a ‘corrupt practice’ under Section 123(2) of the Act of 1951,” 

the court said.

 

[Read Judgment]



Share this article:

About:

Jhanak is a lawyer by profession and legal journalist by passion. She graduated at the top of her cl...Read more

Follow:
FacebookTwitterLinkedinInstagram


Leave a feedback about this
Related Posts
View All

Ayodhya verdict: SC rules in favour of Ram Lalla, Sunni Waqf Board gets alternate land Ayodhya verdict: SC rules in favour of Ram Lalla, Sunni Waqf Board gets alternate land

SC bench led by CJI Ranjan Gogoi has allotted the dispute site to Ram Janmabhoomi Nyas, while directing the government to allot an alternate 5 acre land within Ayodhya to Sunni Waqf Board to build a mosque.

Supreme Court Top Panel Names Chief Justices for Bombay, Orissa and Meghalaya High Courts Supreme Court Top Panel Names Chief Justices for Bombay, Orissa and Meghalaya High Courts

The Orissa High Court has been without a permanent chief justice since January 5, 2020 after the retirement of former Chief Justice, KS Jhaveri. The high court is currently headed by acting Chief Justice Sanju Panda.

Himachal Pradesh High Court Grant Bail to a Man Accused of Committing Unnatural Acts with Cow, Said that there is no Criminal History Depicting Pervert Mind [READ ORDER] Himachal Pradesh High Court Grant Bail to a Man Accused of Committing Unnatural Acts with Cow, Said that there is no Criminal History Depicting Pervert Mind [READ ORDER]

without commenting on the merits of the case at this stage of investigation and the period of detention he faced in jail, the Court after analyzing all things allowed bail to the accused person ( Jai Ram). Himachal Pradesh High Court, Grant Bail, Justice Anup Chitrakara

How the Waqf Board has the third largest ownership of land after the Indian Railways and the Defense Dept.? How the Waqf Board has the third largest ownership of land after the Indian Railways and the Defense Dept.?

SHO Bhardwaj was quick to defend the Maulvi in questioning regarding the Mazar but harassed the reported who sought truth. Why did the SHO have to harass a Media reporter when he was doing his job? Who benefits from this? Why is there a Mazar on a flyover? Why is a Minority Welfare development Board in control of so much property? || #Mazar #SHOBhardwaj #Mazar #Mosque #WaqfBoard #Islam #News #Waqf #RemoveSHOBharadwaj

TRENDING NEWS

no-legal-mandate-for-uploading-of-form-17c-on-website-or-handing-over-to-anyone-other-than-candidate-or-agent-ec-tells-sc
Trending Judiciary
No legal mandate for uploading of Form 17C on website or handing over to anyone other than candidate or agent, EC tells SC

EC tells SC there's no legal mandate to upload Form 17C on websites or provide it to anyone other than candidates or agents, citing risks of misuse and mistrust.

23 May, 2024 11:28 AM
national-security-always-paramount-sc-cancels-bail-of-pfi-members
Trending Judiciary
'National security always paramount,' SC cancels bail of PFI members [Read Judgment]

SC emphasizes national security, cancels bail of eight PFI members, stressing balance between civil liberties and counter-terrorism under UAPA.

23 May, 2024 12:05 PM

TOP STORIES

sc-notice-to-ec-on-plea-by-adr-for-release-of-voters-turnout-data
Trending Judiciary
SC notice to EC on plea by ADR for release of voters turnout data

SC issues notice to EC on ADR plea to release voter turnout data. SC demands EC to disclose vote counts within 48 hours after each phase of the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

18 May, 2024 11:16 AM
recovered-direct-chats-between-kejriwal-and-hawala-operators-on-transfer-of-money-ed-claims-before-sc
Trending Judiciary
Recovered direct chats between Kejriwal and hawala operators on transfer of money, ED claims before SC

ED claims to have recovered direct chats between Kejriwal and hawala operators on money transfer in Delhi liquor policy scam; SC reserves judgement on arrest appeal.

18 May, 2024 11:47 AM
delhi-hc-refuses-jackie-shroff-interim-relief-against-youtuber-unfilteredthugesh-for-alleged-personality-rights-infringement
Trending CelebStreet
Delhi HC refuses Jackie Shroff interim relief against Youtuber 'UnfilteredThugesh' for using "Thug Life" in video on Shroff

The Delhi High Court has refused Jackie Shroff interim relief against Youtuber 'UnfilteredThugesh' for alleged personality rights' infringement.

18 May, 2024 05:20 PM
abuse-under-sc-st-act-has-to-be-in-public-view-to-make-out-offence-sc
Trending Judiciary
Abuse under SC/ST Act has to be in public view to make out offence: SC [Read Judgment]

SC rules abuse under SC/ST Act must be in public view. Case involves Olympic Riding and Equestrian Academy, highlighting key requirements for the offence.

18 May, 2024 05:45 PM

ADVERTISEMENT


Join Group

Signup for Our Newsletter

Get Exclusive access to members only content by email