The Election Commission has issued notice to Samajwadi Party Rajya Sabha member Jaya Bachchan, seeking explanation about the concealment of immovable property in Barabanki in her affidavit.
Taking a serious view of the lapse on the part of Jaya Bachchan in not mentioning the property in the affidavit filed before the returning officer of Lucknow in the by-election 2006 to the Upper House, the commission directed the State chief electoral officer (CEO) to take action in the matter.
Under Secretary, Election Commission SR Kar, in his letter to the CEO dated January 22, 2007 said, "I am directed to send herewith a copy of complaint dated October 19, 2006 received from Amir Haider, advocate, Barabanki, which is self-explanatory. The returning officer concerned may be asked to take appropriate action on the abovementioned complaint".
Principal Secretary, Vidhan Sabha and returning officer Rajendra Prasad Pandey, in his letter to Jaya Bachchan on February 5, 2007 sought explanation from her at the earliest. Amir Haider, a district Congress leader, had said in his complaint to the commission that Jaya Bachchan had concealed the details of two properties in the name of her husband Amitabh Bachchan in Daulatpur village in Barabanki.
Haider said the properties were purchased on May 15, 2006 whereas she had filed her nomination papers on June 1, 2006 for the by-election. In August 2006, Pandey, on the instructions of the commission, had sought reply from Amir Haider along with the relevant documents. Haider had submitted the documents in November 2006. Thereafter the matter did not move further. Pandey issued notice to Jaya Bachchan only after receiving a letter from the commission last month.
This is the second time Jaya Bachchan has landed in trouble after resigning from the Upper House over office of profit in March 2006. Haider said Jaya did not disclose two pieces of land in the affidavit, which was against the electoral law and was therefore, punishable under the law. He said concealment of Barabanki properties indicated that the affidavit was incomplete.