The Manipur High Court on Tuesday dismissed an application filed by MLA Thangjam Arunkumar of Wangkhei AC to dismiss an election petition filed by Yumkham Erabot.
“This court is not inclined to dismiss the election petition on the ground raised by the applicant”, stated the HC.
The application was filed for dismissing the election petition filed against MLA Thangjam Arunkumar, former minister Okram Henry and Rajkumar Priyobarta, who contested in 2022 from Wangkhei assembly constituency, stating that the ground that the election petition suffers from "absence of concise statement", "lacking immaterial particulars", "nondisclosure of a triable issue or cause of action", "non-compliance of mandatory requirements of law in preferring an election petition" as provided under Section 81 and 83 of the RP Act, 1951 and Rule 94A of the Conduct of Elections Rules, 1961.
The election petition had been filed in the context of the gross misrepresentation and the concealment of facts, documents, assets, liabilities and holdings by the applicant at the time of filing his affidavit in Form - 26 along with his nomination papers in connection with the 12th Manipur Legislative Assembly Election.
The HC opined that on careful perusal of the averments made in the election petition, the court find that the election petitioner, Yumkham Erabot elaborately and concisely pleaded all the material facts and set forth full particulars of all the actions and omissions of the applicant which are sufficient to constitute the case for claiming to set aside the election of the applicant in terms of the relevant provisions of the RP Act, 1951.
“This Court is not inclined to accept the contentions advanced on behalf of the applicant that in the said election petition there is no concise statement of material facts and no full particulars of corrupt practice and that the election petition did not disclose a triable issue or cause of action”, stated the HC.
The HC further stated that the election petitioner had substantially complied with the mandate of Section 81(3) of the RP Act, 1951 and the court is not inclined to dismissed the election petition only on the ground of omitting to write the words "the petition" at the time of attestation of the copy of the election petition furnished to the applicant.
For dismissing the election petition for non-compliance with the requirements of filing an affidavit in support of the allegation of corrupt practice as provided under the proviso to Section 83(1) of the RP Act, the HC stated that the allegations made in the election petition are mainly in connection with the improper acceptance of the nomination of the applicant and non-compliance with the statutory provisions.
The allegation regarding corrupt practice made in the election petition relates to the concealment of material information in Form - 26 affidavit filed by the applicant, which amounts to undue influence as defined in Section 123(2) of the RP Act, 1951, the HC added.