Decided on September 17,1963

Chittoori Indrayya Appellant


SHARAFUDDIN AHMED J. - (1.) This special appeal arises out of the judgment of the Election Tribunal, Eluru, dated 31st January 1963, made in Election Petition No. 49 of 1962, on its file. The appellant herein Chittoori Indrayya filed a petition under section 81 of the Representation of Peoples Act (Act 43) of 1951 (hereinafter called the Act), calling in question the election of the respondent Mallupudi Harischndra Prasad from the Tanuku Constituency to the Legislative Assembly of Andhra Pradesh in the General Elections held in February 1962. The appellant was an independent candidate while the respondent belonged to the Congress Group and they were the only contestants for the seat. The respondent succeeded by a majority of 111 votes. Thereupon, the appellant filed the election petition challenging the return of the respondent on various grounds. The relief sought by him was for a declaration that the election of the respondent is void and that the appellant is duly elected under Section 101 of the Act, or in the alternative to set aside the election, order fresh election and to order recounting of the ballot papers polled in the election.
(2.) The allegations contained in the election petition covered a wide field commencing from the preparation of electoral rolls to the termination of proceedings by declaration of the result. It was stated that the electoral rolls contained the names of 400 persons who had not attained the required age by the qualifying date and this has been brought about by influencing the enquiry officer. The counting was also found fault with inasmuch as sufficient number of votes that were polled for the respondent had been incorrectly taken into account. It was urged that the respondent had subsisting contracts with the Government and was, therefore, disqualified for being elected as a member of the Legislative Assembly. With reference to the fact that the appellant was running a sugar factory it Was stated that the votes of sugarcane growers were obtained in his favour under threat and coercion and, therefore, the respondent was guilty of corrupt practice as contemplated under section 123(2) of the Act. His further objection was that on the eve of election the respondent convened a public meeting at Pattipadu and promised the voters that he would contribute Rs. 50,000 for the construction of a bridge for them if they voted for him. On these grounds, it is alleged that the result of the election has been materially affected and the appellant was entitled to be declared as elected setting aside the election of the respondent.
(3.) The respondent filed his counter denying all the allegations contained in the petition. It was stated by him that the material particulars were not furnished and, therefore, the relevant paragraphs had to be struck off. On this objection, further clarification was made by the appellant and a fresh counter was filed denying the allegations.;

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