Delhi lawyer files complaint asking EC to cancel AIMIM candidates in UPtext_fields
During the ongoing Uttar Pradesh Assembly Election 2022, Delhi-based lawyer filed a complaint with the Election Commission of India (ECI) seeking the cancellation of all candidates of All-India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM) for alleged non-compliance with the rules and regulations of the Representation of People Act 1951.
According to petitioner Advocate Vineet Jindal, in his complaint to Chief Election Commissioner Sushil Chandra, AIMIM President Asaduddin Owaisi has made many controversial statements during his campaign rallies and press conferences, which have been widely circulated on print media, electronic media, and social media to solicit votes for the candidates AIMIM filed.
"Owaisi accused the BJP government of not allowing Muslim girls to wear hijab and shared a video clip," the complaint states. On 13 Feb.2022, he said 'One day a hijabi will become Prime Minister of India' in a statement shared on Twitter.
As Jindal noted, the matter of wearing hijab in educational institutes is already pending before the Karnataka High Court, and an interim judgment has already been delivered in the present case that prevents any student regardless of his or her religion from wearing saffron shawls, scarves, hijab, or religious flags in class.
AIMIM candidates in the current elections are being partisanized by Owaisi through the misinterpretation of the controversy over hijab, he alleged.
Additionally, Owaisi's January 29 TV interview was highlighted in the complaint. In that interview, Owaisi allegedly stated: "In 2019, when Amit Shah introduced a Bill to amend the UAPA (Unlawful Activities Prevention Act), the NIA (National Investigation Agency) inspector sitting in Delhi can declare any Muslim a terrorist", and he wanted UP's 19 percent Muslim population to enjoy fair representation.
Jindal claimed that he made these statements to provoke Muslims against other political parties based on religion in order to gain Muslim votes by motioning himself as a Muslim and having his party candidates run as Muslims.
As mentioned in the complaint, Section 123 of the Representation of People Act 1951 defines as "corrupt practice" appeals made by a candidate or his agents to vote for or refrain from voting for any person on the basis of "his" religion, race, caste, community or language and that "religion, race, caste, community or language would not be allowed to play any role in the electoral process" and that the election of that candidate would be null and void if an appeal is made based on these considerations.
Additionally, he cited the apex court ruling on the subject, praying that in the interest of justice and preserving the sanctity of elections, the candidatures of all the AIMIM candidates in the coming Uttar Pradesh general elections be nullified for violating Section 123 (3) & 3a of the Representation of People Act 1951.