A Bench comprising of Justice S. Abdul Nazeer and Justice V. Ramasubramanian while hearing petitions challenging the dismissal of quashing petitions against the criminal case, issued notice to the complainant and others.
Badal has challenged Punjab and Haryana High Court order dated August 27, 2021, by which the High Court rejected Badal’s plea seeking to quash the proceedings against him and a summoning order passed by Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, Hoshiarpur.
The matter pertains to the controversy over the dual constitution of ShiromAkali Dal.Hoshiarpur resident Balwant Singh Khera had filed a criminal complaint before the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate back in 2009 accusing SAD of submitting two different constitutions i.e. one with the Gurdwara Election Commission (GEC) and the second with the Election Commission of India (ECI) to seek recognition as a political party.
The criminal complaint is premised on the allegation that the party has claimed to be a secular party and given a declaration to abide by the principles of secularism in its constitution filed before ECI. At the same time, it contests elections for a religious body, Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee, thereby being a religious party.
R.S. Cheema, Senior advocate appeared for Sukhbir Singh Badal, K.V. Vishwanathan, Senior Advocate appeared for Prakash Singh Badal, Sandeep Kapur, Advocate appeared for Daljit Singh Cheema and Indira Unninayar, Advocate appeared for the complainant.
The petitions were filed by Karanjawala & Co. The brief was led by Nandini Gore and Sandeep Kapur, Senior Partners, along with Virinder Pal Singh Sandhu, Aditi Bhatt, Tarannum Cheema, Tahira Karanjawala, Niharika Karanjawala, Apoorva Pandey among others.
The advocate argued before the court that being religious does not run contrary to the principles of secularism and merely because a political outfit is contesting elections to a Gurdwara committee does not mean it is not secular. The lawyer argued that the criminal case with allegations of forgery and cheating over the constitution of the party filed before ECI and GEC has no basis. (ANI)