HC dismisses petition challenging Yogi as CM, imposes cost on petitioner

HC dismisses petition challenging Yogi as CM, imposes cost on petitioner

Lucknow: The Lucknow Bench of Allahabad High Court has dismissed a writ praying to issue a writ quo warranto to Yogi Adityanath questioning his continuance as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh with effect from September 25 and imposed a cost of Rs 11,000 on the petitioner.

The petition was dismissed by the bench of Justice Attau Rahman Masoodi and Justice Om Prakash Shukla.

The court observed that the prayer made in the writ petition was to issue a writ quo warranto to the respondent (Yogi Adityanath) very kindly questioning his continuance as Chief Minister of State of Uttar Pradesh with effect from September 25. “To pass any other appropriate order as the circumstances of the case may require and to allow the writ petition,” it said.

The bench observed. “Apparently, the petitioner at Para 19 of the writ petition has admitted that he is neither an Elector nor a candidate at the election of 322- Gorakhpur Urban Legislative Assembly constituency, from which the Respondent stands elected.”

It stated, “It is also available from the petition that the present petition has come to be filed on the ground that first the respondent is a usurper of office of CM of state of UP with effect from September 25 and secondly allegedly the respondent was not qualified to contest the election for the current legislative assembly due to violation of provisions of Rule 4 A of the Conduct of Election Rules, 1961.”

It said, “Thus, in a nut-shell, it has been prayed by the petitioner for issuance of writ of Quo Warranto against the respondent for his continuation as CM of UP with effect from September 25.”

The bench observed, “This court, having given a thoughtful consideration to the issue in hand, finds the present petition to be very amusing. The petitioner seems to be in a spree of filing this kind of petition as admittedly, an identical petition praying inter-alia for the same relief was dismissed as withdrawn.”

The court observed that the present petition is also liable to be rejected in as much as the petitioner does not have any locus for filing the present petition. “As to who can prefer an Election Petition, section 81 of the Representation of People Act, 1950 provides that an Election Petition may be presented either by any elector or any candidate at such election.”

It said, “Further the explanation to section 81 provides that an elector means a person who was entitled to vote at the election to which the Election Petition relates. In the present case, the petitioner has admitted that he is not an elector registered in the 322 – Gorakhpur Urban Legislative Assembly. Therefore, this court finds that the petitioner does not have any locus for filing the present writ petition as has also been held in the case of Tej Bahadur versus Narendra Modi (2020) wherein the apex court held that the locus for filing an Election Petition depends entirely on the question whether a particular person is an elector of the constituency or is a candidate or can claim to be a duly nominated candidate. The petitioner fails to fall in any of the category to make the present petition maintainable.”

The bench said, “Further, the petitioner has failed to show from records as to how the appointment or the continuation of the respondent in the Chief Minister post is not in accordance with law.”

While dismissing the petition on November 11, the bench ordered, “For all the aforesaid reason the present petition is dismissed, however since valuable time has been spent by this court on at least two occasions, therefore this court finds it appropriate to impose an exemplary cost of Rs 11,000 on the petitioner, which shall be paid to State legal Services Authority within four weeks from the date of order.”

UNI

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