Com­mu­nal over­tones get Shaji dis­qual­i­fied

The New Indian Express - - TAMIL NADU | SOUTH -

THE HC registry will com­mu­ni­cate the stay or­der to the Speaker of the As­sem­bly and the Elec­tion Com­mis­sion.

Shaji had se­cured 2,287 votes more than Nikesh. The pe­ti­tion al­leged that an ap­peal was made to the vot­ers be­long­ing to the Mus­lim com­mu­nity, by Shaji, his agents and other peo­ple to vote for the UDF can­di­date on the ground of his re­li­gion. Pam­phlets were cir­cu­lated stat­ing not to vote for a can­di­date who is not a be­liever of Is­lamic faith and not a mem­ber of the Mus­lim com­mu­nity. An­other pam­phlet was cir­cu­lated with an aim of low­er­ing the rep­u­ta­tion of Nikesh. Po­lice and the spe­cial squad sezied the pam­phlets for de­tec­tion of vi­o­la­tion of the model code of con­duct.

Shaji ar­gued that he and his elec­tion agent never com­mit­ted any cor­rupt prac­tice. He had never shown any affin­ity to­wards any re­li­gion.

The pam­phlet pub­lished against Nikesh stated “there is no space for non-Mus­lims be­fore Al­lah, the most benev­o­lent and they will not cross the bridge of ‘Si­rath’ dur­ing fi­nal days. They are doomed to sleep with the devil. It re­quested Mus­lim vot­ers to pray to Al­lah to bless Shaji, a Mus­lim, who prays five times a day.

The court ob­served that the can­di­date’s re­li­gion can­not be used for seek­ing votes on the ground. The state­ment in the pam­phlets was a di­rect re­quest to vote on the ground of Mus­lim re­li­gion and not to vote for a non-Mus­lim.

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