The Calcutta High Court on Thursday reserved the judgment on a plea of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee challenging Nandigram election results. The Chief Minister also appeared for the hearing virtually. A bench of Justice Kausik Chanda said the petitioner has full right to move for recusal and rest assured, the matter will be decided judicially.
Justice Chanda asked Singhvi if he is aware of BJP’s organizational structure. In reply to Justice Chanda, Singhvi said, “I have many friends in BJP. I am broadly aware.” To this, Justice Chanda said he is recalling the case.
The petitioner’s lawyer Singhvi mentioned instances that shows Justice Chanda has connections with BJP and mention a case where the Judge moved the intervention application on its behalf.
“You lawyers also have political affiliations. You are from Congress and Mookherjee has a BJP background. But you are appearing for TMC’s Mamata Banerjee’s case,” said Justice Chanda to Singhvi.
West Bengal Chief Minister has also moved an application to change the judge in the case and alleged that Justice Chanda has connections with BJP.
The Election Commission had declared BJP’s Suvendu Adhikari the winner in the fiercely contested election for the Nandigram constituency. After her defeat in Nandigram, Mamata Banerjee alleged that the Returning Officer of the Assembly seat had said that he was threatened against recounting of votes.
Despite Banerjee losing the seat to Adhikari, who was once her close aide, the TMC registered a landslide victory in polls winning 213 seats in the 294-member West Bengal assembly. While the BJP lost the polls but emerged as the second-largest party with 77 seats.
The TMC even wrote to the Chief Electoral Officer, West Bengal seeking “immediate re-counting of votes and postal ballots” in the Nandigram constituency, but recounting was refused for reasons unknown.
“Such refusal is bad in law… We demand an immediate recounting of Nandigram AC 210 to preserve the sanctity of the electoral process,” the TMC had said in a letter to the CEO.
(With ANI Inputs)