PIL in Kerala HC against Rajeev Chandrasekhar alleging false info in election affidavit

A bench of justices VG Arun and S Manu will be hearing the case on Tuesday, April 23.
Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar
Union Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar
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A Public Interest Litigation (PIL) has been moved at the Kerala High Court, on Monday, April 22, against Thiruvananthapuram’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Rajeev Chandrasekhar stating that he furnished false information in his affidavit during his nomination. It has been also alleged that the returning officer did not take any action against Rajeev for the same. The PIL has been filed by Congress leader-advocate Avani Bansal and Renjith Thomas, who is a software professional based out of Bengaluru.

According to the petitioners, there are “deliberate suppressions regarding the assets” Rajeev mentioned in his affidavit, and that it indicates a “deliberate attempt to misrepresent his financial status”. They alleged that he did not declare significant portions of his assets, including his house, luxury car, private jets and shares in real estate and companies. The petitioners said that Rajeev had declared that the value of his shareholding in four companies was Rs 6.38 crores while it is Rs 1,610.53 crores according to the filings made in the Ministry of Corporate Affairs.

Stating that they filed complaints with the Election Officer and the Chief Electoral Officer with prime facie evidence of filing false affidavit, the petitioners alleged that no action has been taken yet. “No response by the Returning Officer or the State Election Commission of India is a fraud upon the citizens of this country and takes away the level playing field for the elections,” the petitioners said.

Further, stating that Rajeev Chandrasekhar’s nomination is in ‘utter and repeated violation’ of the relevant provisions of the Representation of Peoples Act, 1950, the Conduct of Election Rules 1961, and as per the compendium given on the Election Commission of India's website, the petitioners sought the court to direct the Election Officer to pass a reasoned order on the complaint within two days.

A bench of justices VG Arun and S Manu will be hearing the case on Tuesday, April 23.

Avani Bansal and Renjith Thomas had earlier filed a complaint against Rajeev with the Returning Officer and Thiruvananthapuram collector Geromic George. They asked him to reject Rajeev’s nomination as he provided false information in his affidavit.

Rajeev, in his affidavit, had declared that he filed only Rs 680 as income tax returns in the financial year 2021-22. His affidavit also states that he owns only a single bike that was purchased in 1994 for Rs 10,000 and that his profession was “social service”. He had declared that he has movable assets worth around Rs 9 crores and immovable assets around Rs 14 crore.

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