The Supreme Court on Monday stayed an order passed by the Bombay High Court asking Election Commission of India (ECI) to immediately hold a by-election for the Pune Parliamentary Constituency.
A bench presided over by Cheif Justice of India D.Y, Chandrachud passed the interim order as it issued notice on a special leave petition filed by the poll body against the directive issued by the High Court.
The Lok Sabha seat in Pune fell vacant following the death of MP Girish Bapat, a senior BJP leader and veteran politician, on March 29 last year.
On December 13, 2023, the Bombay High Court had ordered that the ECI will proceed to take all necessary steps immediately to call the election for the Pune Parliamentary Constituency-34 in accordance with law.
In its order, a bench of Justices G.S.Patel and Kamal Khata of the High Court had said: “An indefinite period of an entire constituency remaining unrepresented is wholly unconstitutional and is fundamentally anathema to our constitutional structure.”
In a certificate issued in August 2023 under Section 151A(b) of the Representation of People Act, 1951, the ECI said that it has “difficulty” in holding a bye-election to the Pune Lok Sabha constituency.
As per the law, a by-election need not be called if the person elected would have a remaining term of less than a year in office as an MP.