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HC junks plea seeking to reject DMK candidate Senthil Balaji's nomination

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Press Trust of India Chennai
The Madras High Court Saturday dismissed a petition seeking a direction to the Election Commission to reject the nomination of DMK candidate Senthil Balaji for the Aravakurichi Assembly bypoll.
A Division Bench comprising Justices S Manikumar and Subramonium Prasad also imposed a cost of Rs 10,000 on the petitioner.
The petitioner A P Geetha, women's wing secretary of Desiya Makkal Sakthi Katchi (DMSK), contended that the former Minister should not be allowed to contest in elections because he had allegedly indulged in electoral malpractices in 2016.
Balaji who won as an AIADMK candidate was suspended by the Speaker along with 18 other MLAs.
Senior counsel P Wilson, who appeared on behalf of Balaji argued that the PIL lacked bonafide and the same petitioner had filed a plea in 2016 which was dismissed by the court.
The petitioner had also filed a plea previously challenging Balaji's election before his disqualification by the Speaker, the counsel said.
Balaji also submitted that disqualification of a candidate under Schedule X by the Speaker did not mean that he can not contest subsequent elections.
The Election Commission's counsel, Nirajan Rajagopalan submitted that the petition was not maintainable and only an election petition can be filed post the elections.
The bench after hearing the arguments initially imposed a cost of Rs 30,000 on the petitioner and after a request made by the counsel reduced it to Rs 10,000 and dismissed the plea.

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First Published: Apr 27 2019 | 8:20 PM IST

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