SC Refuses To Direct Election Commission To Disclose Form 17C Records of Votes Polled, Adjourns Plea: Report
Moneylife Digital Team 24 May 2024
Expressing reluctance to interfere in the middle of the election process, the Supreme Court (SC) on Friday adjourned an application seeking directions to the election commission of India (ECI) to publish the booth-wise absolute numbers of voter turnout and upload the form 17C records of votes polled on its website, says a report from LiveLaw.
A vacation bench of justice Dipankar Datta and justice Satish Chandra Sharma said that a 'hands-off approach' has to be taken by the SC regarding the election process and that there cannot be any interruptions in the process.
The bench also pointed out that the prayers in the interlocutory application are the same as the prayers in the main writ petition filed in 2019. The bench stated that the main relief cannot be sought in an interim application and suggested that the application be heard along with the main petition.
"In between elections, hands-off approach has to be taken. Let the application be heard along with the main writ petition. We cannot interrupt the process. Let us have some trust in the authority," justice Datta orally says.
After hearing arguments for over one hour, the bench dictated the following order :
"The arguments on the interim application were heard. Prima facie we are not inclined to grant any relief on the interim application at this stage in view of similarities of the prayer (a) of the interim application with prayer (b) of the writ petition out of which the Interim Application arises. The grant of relief in the interim application would amount to the grant of final relief. Relist the application together with the writ petitions before the appropriate bench after vacations. We have not expressed any opinion on merits except he prima facie view indicated above."
The interim application was filed by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR) in a writ petiton filed by it in 2019. A writ petition filed by Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Mahua Moitra in 2019 alleging discrepancies in the voter turnout data of the 2019 general elections is also listed today along with it.
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