BJP MLA Nimisha Suthar and the Election Commission of India have been summoned on a petition filed by Congress’s Suresh Katara.
The Gujarat High Court has issued summons to BJP MLA Nimisha Suthar and the Election Commission of India on a petition filed by Congress’s Suresh Katara who lost to Ms Suthar, challenging her caste certificate submitted for the bypoll to Morva Hadaf constituency, which is reserved for the Scheduled Tribe candidates.
Justice Nikhil S Kariel on Monday issued summons to Ms Suthar and other respondents, including the election officer and the Election Commission of India, under provisions of the Representation of the People Act, and asked them to appear before the HC on August 2.
Ms Suthar won the by-election to the Morva Hadaf Assembly constituency (in Panchmahals district), reserved for the Scheduled Tribe (ST) candidates, on May 2 this year, by defeating her Congress rival Suresh Katara.
Suresh Katara recently filed an election petition in the High Court, seeking a direction to set aside Ms Suthar’s election, alleging that the caste certificate submitted by her to the EC was “false and unverified”.
Ms Suthar had won the by-election, necessitated due to the death of Independent MLA Bhupendra Khant in January this year.
Mr Khant’s caste certificate was earlier invalidated by the Gujarat government, after which he was disqualified as an MLA.
Mr Khant had challenged the governor’s decision to disqualify him, which was pending in the court before being rendered infructuous and disposed of following his death.