New Delhi: Candidates for panchayat polls in Bengal can’t file nominations by e-mail, the Supreme Court said today, crushing the hopes of opposition candidates who have alleged terror tactics by the state’s ruling Trinamool Congress. The Calcutta High Court order, which allowed them to file nomination from the safety of their homes, has now been overturned by the top court.
The Supreme Court said the high court order, which was hailed as one setting a precedent by a section of the legal fraternity, was “bad in law”. “The High Court cannot invoke Information-Technology law in Election law,” the judges said, indicating that the two laws cannot be read together.
The court said the election can now proceed as scheduled, since no extra time will be needed for scrutiny and other procedures of an e-nomination.
The top court, however, expressed concerns about the high number of candidates elected unopposed in the state. The figure, which at 34 per cent is likely to be an all-time high, was the result of Trinamool terror that did not allow any competition, opposition parties have alleged.
“What’s bothering us is 34 per cent of the candidates have been elected unopposed… Elections to be held in absolute fairness,” the judges said.