EC silent on Sonia's foreign origin issue | india | Hindustan Times
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EC silent on Sonia's foreign origin issue

india Updated: Aug 05, 2007 14:59 IST

The Election Commission has refrained from making any comments on Sonia Gandhi's foreign origin before the Supreme Court, which has decided to examine whether a person not born in the country is entitled to hold public office under the Constitution.

The court had sought a specific reply whether a person who had acquired citizenship by registration can be appointed to public office.

"It is respectfully submitted that EC has no comment to make on this constitutional question as it does not pertain to the conduct of elections or disqualifications of a candidate," the Election Commission said in its affidavit.

"None of the provisions nor any mandate of any other law confers any jurisdiction on it to interfere with what the successful candidate does or what post he is occupying after the elections are over," the Commission said while noting that its essential job relates to the superintendence, direction and control of elections.

The apex court had on April 16 directed the Commission to file its reply on the question "whether the person who is not born in the country can be appointed or elected to a public office under the Constitution." The court had issued notices to the Centre and the poll panel and made it clear that it would examine the issue in context of the persons who are citizens by registration.

Rashtriya Mukti Morcha (RMM), a socio-political organisation, had raised the issue of Congress President Sonia Gandhi for being invited to form government at the Centre by the President in 1999 after the NDA lost a no-confidence motion.