Decided on February 10,2021



JYOTSNA REWAL DUA, J. - (1.) Notice. Mr. Raju Ram Rahi, learned Deputy Advocate General and Mr. Ajeet Singh Saklani, learned Standing Counsel, appear and waive service of notice on behalf of respondents No.1 and 3 and respondent No.2, respectively. In view of nature of order being passed, no notice is required to be issued to respondent No.4. Whether reporters of Local Papers may be allowed to see the judgment?
(2.) The petitioner contested the elections for the post of Member, Block Development Committee from Ward No.5- Pokhi, Block Karsog, District Mandi. The elections were held on 21.01.2021 and the result was declared on 22.01.2021. The petitioner remained unsuccessful. He has preferred the instant writ petition for the following substantive relief:- "i. That appropriate writ order or direction may very kindly be issued to the respondents to recount the number of votes of ward No.5-Pokhi of Block Development Committee (BDC), as 53 votes are either missing or have not been counted and consequent upon the same the result of the election may kindly be declared afresh, in the interest of justice and fair play."
(3.) The writ petition filed by the petitioner is not maintainable at all as an efficacious and alternate remedy is available to the petitioner for redressal of his grievance under the provisions of H.P. Panchayati Raj Act, 1994. Section 162 of the H.P. Panchayati Raj Act provides that no election under the Act shall be called in question except by an election petition presented in accordance with the provisions of the chapter and Section 175 of the Act enumerates the grounds for declaring election to be void. The above sections run as under: "162. Election petition:- No election under this Act shall be called in question except by an election petition presented in accordance with the provisions of this Chapter." "175. Grounds for declaring election to be void.- (1) If the authorized officer is of the opinion- (a) that on the date of his election the elected person was not qualified, or was disqualified to be elected under this Act; or (b) that any corrupt practice has been committed by the elected person or his agent or by any other person with the consent of the elected person or his agent; or (c) that any nomination has been improperly rejected; or . (d) that the result of the election, in so far as it concerns the elected person, has been materially affected- (i) by the improper acceptance of any nomination, or (ii) by the improper reception, refusal or rejection of any vote or the reception of any vote which is void, or (iii) by any non-compliance with the provisions of this Act or of any rule made under this Act, the authorized officer shall declare the election of the elected persons to be void." ;

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