CHENNAI: A day after actor Vishal’s nomination papers for the RK Nagar bypolls were rejected by Returning Officer K Velusamy, the Election Commission appeared to be toying with the idea of ordering re-scrutiny.
The possibility emerged after Vishal met Chief Electoral Officer Rajesh Lakhoni and submitted a detailed petition explaining what happened during the scrutiny. He also submitted a video in which the RO reportedly said his nomination had been accepted.
“Though there is no direct provision to order a re-scrutiny of nomination, the Election Commission has powers to order the RO to reconsider the nomination of Vishal under Article 324 of the Constitution,” official sources said. Since the issue has evoked strong criticism against the EC, Lakhoni apprised the Commission about the latest developments.
Earlier in the day, Vishal committed a faux pas by addressing his petition to the State Election Commissioner who conducts the local body elections, and handed it over to the Chief Electoral Officer. This made him a target for trolling in the social media in a big way.
“I am given to understand that the RO rejected my nomination only at the behest of certain persons belonging to the ruling government,” Vishal charged in his petition to the CEO and said that at least on two occasions, the RO went out of the scrutiny hall and spoke to someone on his mobile phone.
Stating that the RO had passed the rejection order in complete contravention of the relevant laws and procedure, Vishal said, “The provisions under Section 36(1) of The Representation of the People Act had not been followed inasmuch as the RO permitting the complainants and entertaining the complaint/objections by the two proposers - Sumathy and Deepan.
Since one other proposer had already accompanied him for the scrutiny, the RO ought not to have permitted the other two persons to be present in the scrutiny hall itself. Scrutinising the nomination forms on the basis of statements of such persons, who are not even entitled to be present at the time of scrutiny, and on the basis of their statement, rejecting my nomination is per se illegal,” the actor added.
Vishal also said the rejection order was passed without giving him another opportunity to submit his explanation, subsequent to the second rejection of his nomination by the RO. “I am really not aware of what transpired during the period between 8.10 pm and 10.45 pm, which warranted the RO to take such a decision without my knowledge. At 8.10 pm, he had accepted my nomination. As per Section 36 (5) of the RP Act, if there is any objection or disruption, the candidate must be given an opportunity of one day to rebut or clarify any objection,” he added.
Stating that he had spoken to the persons who had said they did not sign in his nomination as proposers, Vishal said the persons (proposers) concerned informed him that they had been coerced. They were also offered huge sums of money to make such false statements before the RO, Vishal alleged.
The entire conversation was recorded in the mobile phone through which he had spoken to them.
The RO had violated the provisions of the Representation of the People Act without giving a window for the actor to prove the objections wrong Thol Thirumavalavan, VCK leader
Vishal’s nomination could be subjected to re-scrutiny and there are precedents for that. I filed my nomination for Bargur bypoll in 2009 and it was rejected during scrutiny. But on my clarification, the RO accepted my nomination Siva Ilango, Satta Panchayat Iyakkam founder