‘Hate speech’: SC refuses to entertain 2 petitions seeking poll ban, EC action against PM

One petitioner didn’t approach the EC first. To the second, the bench reportedly said it wasn’t inclined to interfere under Article 32.

WrittenBy:NL Team
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The Supreme Court has refused to entertain a petition seeking to disqualify Prime Minister Narendra Modi from elections for allegedly making hate speeches and invoking religion during campaigns, LiveLaw reported.

The court dismissed another petition which sought directions to the Election Commission of India to act against PM Modi and Union minister Anurag Thakur over their alleged hate speeches.

The petition seeking a six-year disqualification of Modi was filed by one Fatima. But the bench of Justices Vikram Nath and Satish Chandra Sharma pointed out that the petitioner had approached the court directly without approaching the EC first, LiveLaw reported. The petitioner then chose to withdraw her petition.

The petitioner claimed that PM Modi’s speech in Rajasthan on April 21 was a grave violation of the Model Code of Conduct, Representation of the Peoples Act and Indian Penal Code. It claimed that the PM made similar remarks in Uttar Pradesh.

The same bench dismissed another petition filed by former bureaucrat EAS Sarma and former IIM Dean Trilochan Sastry seeking directions to the EC over alleged hate speeches given by PM Modi and minister Thakur, Live Law reported.

Senior advocate Sanjay Hegde, appearing for the petitioners, reportedly pointed out that in 2019, the court had entertained a similar petition and sought the EC’s. But the matter was disposed of after the elections.

According to LiveLaw, the bench said it is “not inclined to interfere in this petition under Article 32”. Hegde requested the bench to qualify the order by adding “at this stage” to leave scope for future remedy, but the bench refused.

The petitioners claimed the EC turned a blind eye to the nature of speeches delivered which constitutes a serious breach of the Model Code of Conduct, the Indian Penal Code, 1860, and the Representation of People Act, 1951.

They also alleged that the EC has previously taken suo motu action against members of other political parties who were violating the Model Code of Conduct.

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