Plea in SC to intervene in case against election of Maha CM to state Assembly

A plea has been filed in the Supreme Court seeking to intervene as a party in the pending appeal challenging the election of Maharashtra Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis to the state Assembly for alleged non-disclosure of pending criminal cases against him in the nomination papers.

The top court is seized of an appeal filed by one Satish Ukey against the Bombay High Court's order dismissing his plea seeking annulment of Fadnavis's election to the Maharashtra Assembly on the ground of alleged non-disclosure of all pending criminal cases against him.

The fresh plea for intervention as a party has been filed by one Mohnish Jeevanlal Jabalpure, a Nagpur resident.

He has sought to bring on record the facts related to a television interview given by Fadnavis in December, 2018 to a vernacular news channel in which the Chief Minister allegedly claimed that the apex court too would dismiss Uke's petition as done by the HC and other judicial forum.

Uke's appeal is likely to come up for final disposal on Tuesday.

Jabalpure has alleged in his plea that on December 13 last year, when the top court had issued notice against Fadnavis in the matter, the chief minister had immediately thereafter given an interview in which he had expressed confidence over the petition being dismissed.

"He approached Election Officer with the complaint, it was rejected, he approached ...(lower) court with the petition, it was rejected, he approached the sessions Court, there also it got rejected, he approached high court, there also it got rejected, now he has approached the Supreme Court there also the petition will be rejected," the plea said allegedly quoting Fadnavis.

Uke in his petition had alleged that Fadnavis, in his election affidavit filed in 2014, had failed to disclose the pendency of two criminal cases against him.

It was contended that the chief minister did not disclose the information as required of him under the election law and the non-disclosure of these two pending criminal cases was in violation of Section 125A of the Representation of People's Act of 1951 and constituted an offence in itself.

The two cases of alleged cheating and forgery were filed against Fadnavis in 1996 and 1998 but charges were not framed.