M A I N   N E W S

Poll panel rejects Swamy’s petition to de-recognise Cong
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 6
The Election Commission today rejected the plea of Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy seeking de-recognition of the Congress. The commission made it clear that its power to suspend or withdraw recognition of a recognised political party could only be exercised in case the party failed to observe model code of conduct or follow lawful directions and instructions of the commission.

There is no direction or instruction of the Election Commission regulating the manner in which a party may spend its funds, says the four-page order of the commission. As the Congress has not infringed upon any of these conditions, its recognition cannot be withdrawn.

The commission has also told Swamy: “The model code of conduct comes into force from the date of announcement of the election schedule by the commission and remains operative till the completion of the election process.

There is nothing in your letter to show as to which provision of the model code has been violated by the Congress by its act of loaning the money to a company.”

Swamy, in his letter on November 3, had prayed for de-recognition of the Congress on the ground that it had loaned more than Rs 90 crore to a company, named Associated Journals Private Limited, incorporated under the Companies Act, 1956, in violation of the guidelines and rules for registration as well as recognition of political parties.

The order said: “Sections 29B and 29C of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, provide for the manner in which political parties may raise funds. There is, however, no provision whatsoever in the Act prescribing the manner in which political parties may use those funds.”

The commission said: “If the party (Congress) has not complied with any of the provisions of the Income Tax Act, 1961, as alleged by you, that matter does not fall in the jurisdiction of the commission.”

Citing paragraph 16A of the Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) Order, 1968, the commission said provisions of suspension or revoking of recognition do not apply in this case.

The commission has taken umbrage at another letter by Swamy written on November 5 saying the “commission does not have anything to do with newspaper reports referred to by you. The commission had not taken any decision in the matter on November 3 or November 4, therefore the issue of leakage of the decision by anyone does not arise. 





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