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Rahul Gandhi’s Amethi nomination papers valid, says Election Commission officer amid row

Four independent candidates had filed objections to Rahul Gandhi’s papers including about his educational qualification, identity, nationality, ownership of property in United Kingdom and information regarding profits earned from British company Backops Limited.

lok sabha elections Updated: Apr 22, 2019 14:45 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Amethi
The allegations had soon enough made it to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s offensive against the Congress president.(PTI)

Congress president Rahul Gandhi’s nomination papers from the Amethi Lok Sabha seat were accepted by the Amethi returning officer on Monday allegations of discrepancies in his nomination form.

Four independent candidates had filed objections to Rahul Gandhi’s papers including about his educational qualification, identity, nationality, ownership of property in United Kingdom and information regarding profits earned from British company Backops Limited.

The allegations had soon enough made it to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party’s offensive against the Congress president.

“I am surprised to know that the Congress leader known as Rahul Gandhi is Raul Vinci. I feel that the Congress should clear the air on the issue and the real names of Rahul and Priyanka Gandhi should come before the people,” Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said on Sunday.

Also Read | ‘In heat of campaign’: Rahul Gandhi regrets remarks on SC’s Rafale order

Congress leaders had dismissed the charge, pointing that similar charges had been probed by non-Congress governments also. “Frivolous charges by non entities are one thing, but it’s shameful of senior leaders to stoop so low,” said Congress leader Hilal Naqvi, responding to the chief minister’s charge.

Days earlier, a petition had also been filed in the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad high court that wanted the judges to cancel Rahul Gandhi’s Lok Sabha membership, claiming that the Congress leader had filed tax returns in London in which he was described as a British national.

Amethi returning officer Ram Manohar Mishra had last week accepted nomination papers filed by BJP’s Smriti Irani. It was alleged that Irani had given different facts about her educational qualification in documents submitted in 2004, 2014 and 2019 and demanded that her nomination papers be rejected.

The returning officer, however, observed that the educational qualification of candidate was only a part of prescribed column of the affidavit and the same had been filled. The returning officer had cited instructions that make it clear that the nomination paper could not be rejected on grounds that the affidavit submitted by the candidate had errors or incorrect information.

First Published: Apr 22, 2019 14:45 IST

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