Punjab medical education minister Anil Joshi on Monday submitted in the Punjab and Haryana high court that the petition seeking his disqualification as member of the legislative assembly had political motive.
In a reply filed before the bench of justice AK Mittal, he stated that the claims in the petition were “absolutely false and incorrect”, as he had enrolled as a voter against serial number 339 in part 142 of the Amritsar North assembly constituency before the 2012 assembly elections; and that he continued as such.
Joshi submitted that he fulfilled all the requirements of Section 5 (c) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, to qualify as Punjab legislator; and that the disqualification petition was based on false averments to make him target of political vendetta.
In December, the office of the Punjab chief electoral officer (CEO) had submitted that it had found no discrepancies in the documents that Joshi had submitted at the time of the 2012 assembly elections. About the double entry in the electoral rolls of 2006 to 2008, the CEO’s office had submitted that the matter was sub judice. Joshi’ reply filed on Monday is silent on this.
Amritsar lawyer Vineet Mahajan had moved court seeking that as Joshi had not been on any voter list in Punjab at the time of the assembly elections, he be disqualified under Article 173 (c) read with Section 5 (c) of the Representation of the People Act, 1951, from holding a seat in the assembly.