A plea has been filed by advocate Kemchand Rajaram Koshti to the Gujarat High Court seeking mandatory directions to the Election Commission of India to recover the cost of expenses incurred from the candidates who left their party and join another one for their own personal interest and gain as well.
Advocate Koshti stated in his plea by naming 19 MLAs and 77 legislators who were a part of the Indian National Congress and contested in the name of the party and also won in the respective seats in the 2017 state assembly election. He further stated that out of those 19 MLAs most of them have ditched their parties and joined the ruling party of the state i.e. Bhartiya Janata Party and also re-contested and re-contesting in the by-poll election from the same assembly seats.
The sole purpose of the writ petition was to direct the respondent of the plea to recover the sum amount from those candidates who indulged in such malpractice for their own personal vendetta. As the party has already spent money behind those candidates for political hoardings, banners, campaigns, joining another party for own personal gains states A clear case of violation of the code of conduct. Advocate Koshti further added some key points validating some petitions stating that the expenses have been incurred is merely about one to two crores per constituency which is public money and that has been spent behind those candidates who also won in the same seats. By moving to another party for personal gain is breaking and disrespecting the trusts of people who have put in them and made them win in the elections. He further implied that such expenses can’t be made for such a mala fide and evil mindset which can hamper the image and reputation of the party. Though resigning or removing such candidates should not be applicable to the Constituency but these ill mentalities should also be taken into the accountability of such. The writ also stated that the Election Commission of India should watch and regulate such acts and make the candidates be accountable for the payment of the expenses spent behind them if they are joining another hand by ditching their own party. It has also made provision in the petition that the MLAs and other legislators should sign an undertaking stating that they can’t join another party until their term is over in the same constituency under the same party banner. Last but not least the petition made by Advocate Koshti sought a mandatory direction by the EC of India to the other parties with whom the candidates are joining during the by-poll elections by leaving their own party to pay a deposit towards the expenses incurred by the earlier party for those candidates.