Nationalist Congress Party MP Supriya Sule’s application seeking dismissal of a petition that challenged her election was rejected by the Bombay high court on Friday.
Sule's rival candidate Mrinalini Kakde had filed the petition urging the high court to scrap Sule’s election on the ground that she had acquired a Singaporean citizenship by purchasing property there, and had therefore been disqualified from contesting for the Lok Sabha.
In June 2010, the high court directed the Centre to decide Kakde’s plea questioning Sule's Indian citizenship. On September 24, 2010, the union home ministry held that Sule was an Indian citizen and there was no law in Singapore that insisted on citizenship for purchasing property.
Armed with the Centre's order, Sule filed an application in August 2011 seeking dismissal of the election petition. Sule, in her application, had stated that she had stayed overseas with her husband for some period, but they returned to India in 2001. However, justice JH Bhatia held that the Centre's decision on the disputed aspect was not reason enough for dismissing Kakde's petition. “The petition cannot be dismissed merely because the Centre has decided that the applicant (Sule) has not acquired citizenship of a foreign country,” the judge observed.
Justice Bhatia rejected Sule's contention that pursing Kakde's case further would be futile. The court has now posted Kakde's election petition for further hearing on December 22.