Jharkhand Assembly Election: SC refuses to allow former CM Madhu Koda to contest polls

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Updated: Nov 17, 2019 9:54 AM

A bench of Justices N V Ramana and V Ramasubramanian sought a response from the Election Commission on the plea of Koda challenging his disqualification by the poll panel in 2017 for not filing election expenses.

Jharkhand Assembly Election, Supreme Court, Madhu Koda, Chaibasa district, coal block allocation scam caseAt the outset, the counsel appearing for Koda said that it has been two years since he has been disqualified and the top court should allow him to contest the upcoming polls.

The Supreme Court on Friday refused to allow former Jharkhand Chief Minister Madhu Koda from contesting the upcoming assembly elections in the state. A bench of Justices N V Ramana and V Ramasubramanian sought a response from the Election Commission on the plea of Koda challenging his disqualification by the poll panel in 2017 for not filing election expenses.

The poll panel had disqualified Koda from contesting elections for three years. At the outset, the counsel appearing for Koda said that it has been two years since he has been disqualified and the top court should allow him to contest the upcoming polls.

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“You yourself is responsible for the delay. You should wait for another one year. We cannot allow you to contest the elections at this stage. We need to hear the other side (EC),” the bench said and issued notice to the poll panel. On November 13, the apex court had agreed to hear the plea of Koda challenging the poll panel decision after his counsel said that the last date for filing nomination for the upcoming assembly polls was November 18.

Koda was disqualified by the poll panel in September, 2017 for three years from contesting elections for failing to file details of expenses related to the 2009 Lok Sabha polls, which he won from the Singhbhum constituency of the state as an Independent candidate.

Koda, an Independent MLA, served as the chief minister of Jharkhand from 2006 to 2008. He has been convicted in a coal block allocation scam case and has been given three-year jail term. He has also been accused in money laundering cases registered by the Enforcement Directorate and disproportionate assets case registered by the state vigilance department. He was first arrested in 2009 from Chaibasa district of the state by the vigilance department.

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