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SC approves amendment to RPA, leaders in jail can contest elections

On July 10, 2013, the Supreme Court had given a judgement that anybody in police custody/jail will not be able to contest elections


The Supreme Court on Tuesday approved amendment to the Representation of the People Act, which allows political leaders in police custody to contest elections.

The apex court said in the light of amendments brought by the Government of India in the Representation of the People Act, a person does not cease to be an elector only by a reason of being in police custody/jail and can therefore contest elections.

On July 10, 2013, the Supreme Court had given a judgement that anybody in police custody/jail will not be able to contest elections.

"The only question is about the vires of section 8 (4) of the Representation of the People Act (RPA) and we hold that it is ultra vires and that the disqualification takes place from the date of conviction," said an apex court bench of Justices A.K. Patnaik and S.J. Mukhopadhaya.

But subsequently in September 2013 the Government of India amended the Representation of the People act by doing away with the disability.

The Amendment Bill seeks to add a proviso to sub-section (2) of section 62 of the RP Act to state that a person cannot cease to be a voter while in detention as his or her right is only temporarily suspended.

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First Published: Tue, November 19 2013. 16:44 IST