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S. Kandaswami Vs. S.B. Adityan - Court Judgment

LegalCrystal Citation
CourtChennai High Court
Decided On
Case NumberCivil Revn. Petn. No. 1338 of 1958
Reported inAIR1959Mad288
ActsRepresentation of the People Act, 1951 - Sections 83(1), 83(3), 90(1), 90(5) and 123(5); Code of Civil Procedure (CPC) , 1908 - Order 6, Rule 5; Constitution of India - Article 227
AppellantS. Kandaswami
RespondentS.B. Adityan
Appellant AdvocateAdv. General, ;T. Martin and ;R. Guruviah, Advs.
Respondent AdvocateK. Venugopal, Adv.
Cases ReferredBhauvanesh Bhushan v. Election Tribunal
representation of the people act (xliii of 1951)--section 83--amending act xxvii of 1956--section 90(5)--particulars--meaning and purpose--tribunal's power to direct particulars--section 90(1)-- applicability to civil procedure code (act v of 1908)--order vi, rule 5--want of particulars or defective particulars--proper procedure for election tribunal--particulars required under section 83 ; material facts under section 83 of the representation of the people act (xliii of 1951) are those which will go to make out the petitioner's case from the charge against the respondent. if the material facts constitute a corrupt practice, certain amount of detail or particulars would be necessary to ensure clearness to prevent surprise at the trial and to indicate the nature of the defence expected.....1. this is a petition filed under article 227 of the constitution to revise the order of the election tribunal, tirmelveli, in i. a. no. 4 of 1958 in election petition no. 98 of 1957. that order directed a striking out of paragraphs iv-a to iv-e of the election petition, except in regard to two instances of the several corrupt practices alleged.2. election petition no. 98 of 1957 was filed under the representation of the people act, 1951 (which will be hereafter referred to as the act) for a declaration that the election of the respondent, s. b. adityan to the madras state assembly from the satankulam constituency in tirunelveli district was void. the election to that constituency was held on 4-3-1957 and 6-3-1957. the petitioner and the respondent were two amongst the four candidates,.....
1. This is a petition filed under Article 227 of the Constitution to revise the order of the Election Tribunal, Tirmelveli, in I. A. No. 4 of 1958 in Election Petition No. 98 of 1957. That order directed a striking out of paragraphs IV-A to IV-E of the election petition, except in regard to two instances of the several corrupt practices alleged.

2. Election petition No. 98 of 1957 was filed under the Representation of the People Act, 1951 (which will be hereafter referred to as the Act) for a declaration that the election of the respondent, S. B. Adityan to the Madras State Assembly from the Satankulam constituency in Tirunelveli District was void. The election to that constituency was held on 4-3-1957 and 6-3-1957. The petitioner and the respondent were two amongst the four candidates, who contested the election. The respondent was declared elected by a majority of about 11,2071 votes over his nearest rival the petitioner. On 15-4-1957 the petitioner filed the election petition referred to above.

His case was that the election was liable to be set aside as it was procured by several corrupt practices. The main heads of charge against the respondent were that there was bribery of rival and intending candidates and of the voters on a large scale, that there was hiring of vehicles for the use of the voters, that the assistance of the police force was procured in furtherance of the prospects of the election, that there was a publication of false statement against petitioner, and that the account of election expenses submitted by the returned candidate was not correct.

3. A written statement was filed by the respondent on 12-7-1957 denying the several averments contained in the petition. There was a complaint in the written statement that full particulars of the alleged corrupt practices were not set out in the petition. The respondent also claimed that sub-paragraphs 6(b), 6(c) and 7 of paragraph IV-A should be struck out as lacking in particulars.

4. Issues were settled on 29-7-1957. Issue No. 9 ran as follows ; Are sub-paragraphs 1 to 7 of paragraph IV-A. paragraphs IV-B, IV-CM, IV-D and IV-E bad for want of full and necessary particulars. There was no issue, however, as to whether the petitioner was liable to be dismissed in limine for lack of particulars nor did the respondent insist on issue No. 9 being tried as a preliminary issue.

5. On 5-8-1957 the respondent filed I. A. No. 1 of 1957 for a direction to dismiss the election petition under Section 90 (3) of the Act on the ground of failure to implead Muthusnd Megan than, who wore candidates, against whom the petitioner in the election petition had alleged commission of corrupt practices by way of payment of bribes by the respondent to induce them to withdraw from the contest. After contest the Election Tribunal dismissed that application. Proceedings under Article 226 of the Constitution were thereafter initiated to quash that order but that met with no success. The judgment of this Court in the application for writ has been reported in S. B. Aditynn v. S. Kandaswami, ILR, 1958 Mad 279: (AIR 1958 Mad 171). The matter was thereafter taken by way of appeal to the Supreme Court, which by its judgment dated 20-5-1958 affirmed the judgment of this Court. The judgment of the Supreme Court is reported in S.B. Adityan v. S. Kandaswami, .

6. The election petition was thereafter taken up by the Tribunal on 25-7-1958. It was then adjourned to 11-8-1958 for evidence. The petitioner is stated to have taken steps for that hearing date, by summoning witnesses and documents, in the meanwhile the respondent took out an application, I A. No. 4 of 1958, to strike out substantially the entirety of the petition, on the ground that it was devoid of full particulars. That application was posted along with the election petition and was heard on the 11th and 12th August.

On behalf of the petitioner it appears to have been contended that the petition contained all the necessary particulars which the petitioner could possibly give, but that if the Tribunal considered the particulars given as insufficient or defective, he should be given an opportunity to rectify the defect. The Election Commissioner held that the averments in the petition were vague and declining to grant any opportunity to the petitioner to furnish better particular directed a striking out of various paragraphs in the petition. The result of that order is that there is very little left in the petition for enquiry. The petitioner seeks to revise that order by the present petition under Article 227 of the Constitution.

7. Before considering the merits of the revision petition, it is necessary to set out the various-charges in the petition which according to the Election Commissioner are vague, justifying the drastic order being struck out. Paragraph IV of the petition avers that the election of the respondent was void for the reasons stated thereafter i. e., in paragraphs IV-A to IV-E. Paragraph IV-A comprises of 7 sub-paragraphs. The first four of them comprise specific items of charges under Section 123(1) of the Representation of the People Act. Sub-paragraph 1 of Paragraphs IV-A runs as follows:

"The first respondent and his election agent Sri. S. B. Adityan 'bribed' the fourth respondent to retire from the contest at the election and in pursuance thereof the fourth respondent retired from the contest on 20-2-1957. The petitioner learns that the first respondent and his election agent promised to pay a substantial sum as gratification to the fourth respondent with the object of inducing him to retire from the contest and that a part of that sum was in fact paid within a few days before or after 20-2-1957 by the first respondent and his election agent."

The next charge which is typical of the two succeeding ones runs,

"Sri M. R. Meganathan was candidate for Sattankulam and Tiruchendur Assembly Constituencies at the election. The first respondent and his election agent paid a gift of Rs. 10,000 to induce him to withdraw from being a candidate at the election from Sattankulam Constituency and in pursuance thereof Sri M. U. Mechanathan withdrew his candidature at the election from Sattankulam Constituency."

The Election commissioner held that the first of the above charges is defective in that the amount of the bribe and the place where it was given were not specified. The defect pointed out in regard to the second and the two charges that followed was that the dates and places of payment of the bribes were not given.

8. The next set of charges are those under Section 123(1)(b) of the Act. Part IV-A(5) contains 5 instances of which the last two relate to treating, It says,

"At the instance and with the consent of the first respondent and his election agent Sri S. T. Adityan gratification in cash were paid, in every village throughout the constituency to the electors with the object of directly inducing them to vote at the election for the first respondent. For instance, (a) Smt. Selvamani Desikar, wife of Desikar of Mudaloor a relieving polling agent of the retimed candidate at Mudaloor was found in the act of bribing the voters with the money provided by the first respondent, near the polling booth at Mudaloor, on 4-3-1957. This was brought to the notice of the Presiding Officer of the polling station by Shri Peter Nadar and Sri Poormaraj, both of Mudaloor."

9. The two instances that followed were similar in nature and relate to the payment of gratification in the shape of money to voters at Peria Kandan Vadali and Samithope. The two further instances relate to bribery by treating, one of them being,

"At Periya Thalai, Sri Francis Fernando, agent of the returned candidate was actively inducing the voters to vote for the returned candidate by giving the voters chits on 4th March 1957, which enabled the voters to get entertainments in the shape of food at the hotels of Periya Thalai. The cost of the entertainments was met by the returned candidate."

A similar one followed with respect to the Santan-kulam village tHE names of the hotels where voters were fed at the cost of the candidate, and dates were given. In regard to all these instances of bribery and treating, the Election Commissioner was of the view that inasmuch as the names of the voters bribed and the amount of bribe were not specified, they should be held to be vague. Para IV-A(6) stated:

"According to the specific arrangements made by the returned candidate and his election agent Sri S. T. Adityan his agents paid money throughout the constituency to such of the voters, in every village, who were willing to go to the booths, secure their ballot papers but actually retrain from voting and smuggle the ballot papers to the man in the confidence of the returned candidate. Ballot papers so smuggled out of the polling booth by the voters who refrained from voting were then smuggled back into the booth by voters employed by the returned candidate." Three instances were given in the village of Sundankottai and Vijayaramapuram. In regard to one of them, viz., para IV-A-6(a) the Election Commissioner held the charge to be sufficiently specific. But he held the other two as vague. Sub-paragraph 6(b) which can be stated to be similar to the next one, runs:

"At about the sama time and place on the same day the same agents of the returned candidate paid Rs. 2 each to several voters to secure the ballot papers and refrain from voting and an additional amount of Rs. 3 each for delivery of the ballot papers smuggled out of the booth to them." The criticism in regard to these was that the names of the persons bribed were not given.

10. Part IV-A(7) states, "The returned candidate and his election agent arranged through their agents for the payment of money in every village in the constituency to induce voters to vote for the first respondent and in pursuance thereof money was paid to sevetal voters in every village". This is no doubt vague and it was so held.

11. Part IV-B charged the respondent with a corrupt practice coming within Section 123(5) of the Act. It specified the motor vehicles, which were alleged to have been hired for the carriage of voters with reference to their registration numbers, and also particularised two villeges amongst others where they were used. This was held to be insufficient in that, the names of the voters who were conveyed by the vehicles were not given.

12. Paragraph IV-C relates to a charge within Section 123(4) of the Act, publication of false statement by or on behalf of respondents by agents of the petitioner. Two instances were set out, viz. notices in Tamil printed at Kumaran Press and Nehru Press, Colombo. The complaint against those averments is not that any particular notice was miff-sing but that the notices themselves were not produced.

13. Paragraph IV-D related to a charge under Section 123(7) and it says,

"The first respondent had also procured or obtained the assistance of members of the Police force for the furtherance of the prospects of his election. For instance -- in Mognanapuram on 4-3-1957, a police constable was found in the act of asking the voters to vote for the first respondent and a report thereof has been made to the concerned authorities."

This was held vague as the names of the police constable and the voter tampered with were not given.

14. Paragraph IV-E relates to a corrupt practice, under Section 123(6) of the Act. It referred to the non-compliance with the provisions of the Act, in that proper accounts were not submitted for the election expenses. That too was characterised as vague. The averments in that paragraph depended upon the petitioner making out is case in the other paragraphs. If money's were expended in the manner alleged by the petitioner in the earlier paragraphs, the accounts would undoubtedly be inaccurate. The result of these findings was that except in regard to two instances, all the other charges were found to be vague. The Election Commissioner held that he had no power to direct better particulars, the only power of the Tribunal according to him being to strike out the defective charges; and he did so.

15. It is, therefore, necessary to consider the object for which particulars are required in an election petition and the power of the Tribunal when if finds the particulars given defective or insufficient.

16. Section 83(1) of the Act says, "An election petition (a) shall contain a concise statement of the material facts on which the petitioner relics; (b) shall set fourth full particulars of any corrupt practice that the petitioner allegas, including as full a statement as possible of the names of the parties alleged to have committed such corrupt practice and the date and place of the commission of each such practice and (c) shall be signed by the petitioner and verified in the manner laid down in the Civil Procedure Code, 1908, for the verification of pleadings," The section makes a distinction between material facts and particulars. Material facts are those, which will go to make out the petitioner's case from the charge against the respondent.

If the material facts constitute a corrupt pra-ctice certain amount of detail would be necessary to ensure clearness. The object of insisting on such details or particulars is to prevent surprise at the trial as otherwise the respondent could not know for certain what is the real point in dispute. The function of tbe particulars is therefore to point out or indicate the nature of the defence expected of tbe respondent. It cannot however mean a disclosure of the evidence which the petitioner has to let in.

17. Rogers on Elections, dealing with this subject in Vol. 2. p 191 states,

"A respondent is further entitled to full particulars of the charges specifically made in the petition, or in the abovementioned particulars. The-particulars ordered in each case will vary according to the circumstances."

In 14 Halsbury's Laws of England, (Simonds Edn.) at p. 276, it is stated;

"Such particulars as may be necessary to prevent surprise and unnecessary expense and to ensure a fair and effectual trial may be ordered by the Court or a Judge in the same way as in ordinary proceedings in the Queen's Bench Division, and upon such terms as to costs and otherwise as may be ordered. Where the allegations in the petition itself are quite general, it is the practice to order immediately particulars of the nature of the alleged offences. Further particulars will he ordered of the circumstances of each charge, the order usually directing the petitioner to furnish particulars of the names of the different persons, in regard to whom the offences are alleged to have been committed, together with their addresses and numbers on the register, or failing that their occupation. Similarly particulars are ordered of persons, by whom the offences are alleged to have been committed, as also of the time and place of the commission of each offence, and of its precise character, and, in the case of charges of bribery or treating, of its degree, will be ordered."

18. In my view particulars should serve a double purpose. Primarily perhaps it should be for the benefit of the respondent to enable him to know what exactly he has got to meet. It would also be necessary for the purpose of enabling the court to exclude irrelevant matters and concentrate upon the real point in controversy. A power to call for particulars in respect of any pleading would therefore be necessary for and incident to a fair trial. In Bhikaji v. Brijlal, , the existence of such a power in the Tribunal was recognised.

19. Mr. M. K. Nambiar, the learned counsel appearing on behalf of the respondent contended that after the amendment of the Representation of the People Act of 1951, by Act XXVII of 1956, the Tribunal would have no power to grant any application for particulars, and that unles" the petitioner in an election petition himself got amended the petition by furnishing the necessary particulars, the petition had to fail for vagueness. In this connection the learned counsel referred to the provisions of Section 83(3) in the Act of 1951 prior to its amendment in 1956, which enabled the Tribunal to direct or allow particulars or better particulars. That provision was repealed by Act XXVII of 1956 and in its place Section 90 (5) was enacted. Section 90 (5) states.

"The Tribunal may, upon such terms as to costs and otherwise as it may deem fit, allow the particulars of any corrupt practice alleged in the petition to be amended or amplified in such manner as may in its opinion be necessary for ensuring a fair and effective trial of the petition, but shall not allow any amendment of the petition which will have the effect of introducing particulars of a corrupt practice not previously alleged in the petition."

According to the learned counsel Section 90(5) only gives a power to allow particulars and not to direct them. In this connection he referred to the decision in Cubison v. Mayo, (1896) 1 Q. B. 246, where a question as to the interpretation of Section 118 of the County Courts Act arose. That section stated that a Solicitor could recover from his client "only costs incurred in any County Court allowed on taxation." It was held that the word "allowed" meant "allowed on an application."

20. The decision reported in Hari Vishnu Kamath v. Election Tribunal. supports the contention of the learned Counsel for the respondent. That decision has been later affirmed by a Full Bench of the same court in Babulal v. Brijnarain, (FB). I am, however, unable to accept that contention. As stated already the power to call for particulars or further particulars in regard to allegations of corrupt practice is one for the benefit of the respondent and sometimes a necessary incident to achieving a fair and effective trial. On principle there can be no justification for the contention that while the petitioner could furnish particulars at any time, the respondent could have no corresponding right to call for them especially when particulars are intended only for his benefit. The remedy of the striking out the petition for vagueness may not always be available.

21. In AIR 1938 Madh Pra 168, it was held that the omission of the words "order such further or better particulars" which re-enacting Section 83(3) as 90(5) showed an intention in the legislature to do away with that power of the court. Reference was made to the rule of interpretation laid down in (D.R.) Fraser & Co. Ltd. v. Minister of National Revenue, 1949 A. C. 24: AIR 1949 PC 120, viz. that when a legislature amends an Act by deleting something which was there, then in the absence of an intention to the contrary the deletion should be taken to be deliberate. That rule could not, however, apply as in my opinion what was omitted while re-enacting Section 83(2) was only a surplusage. Under Section 90(5) there is a power to allow particulars for a fair and effective trial. Those words are wide enough to cover a power to order particulars of an opponent's pleading. Further Section 90(1) of the Act states "that every election petition shall be tried as nearly as may be in accordance with the Civil Procedure Code. Order VI Rule 5 C. P C. states,

"A further and better statement of the nature of the claim or defence or further and better particulars of anv matter in any pleading may in all cases be ordered, upon such terms as to costs and Otherwise as may be just."

If Order VI, Rule 5 C. P. C. is taken to regulate the trial of election petitions by virtue of Section 90(1) there would be really no need for any special power under the Act to direct particulars and the deletion of the clause in Section 83(3) when it was re-enacted in Section 90(5) would have no significance.

22. In Haris chandra v. Triloki Singh, , it was held that the provisions of the Civil Procedure Code would apply to the trial of election petition. Even if Section 90(5) is construed as taking away the power of the tribunal to direct particulars, it could not be so read as to impliedly take away the rules of procedure made applicable by Section 90 (1). It has now been settled that an election petition can be amended as under Order VI Rule 17 C. P. C. But as pointed out in , such powers of amendment are limited. An amendment may include the introduction of a new or additional instance of a corrupt practice pleaded and specified.

But particulars are for amplifying or for furnishing details of an instance of corrupt practice already pleaded. It stands to reason that the Tribunal should be more liberal and have greater powers in the matter of granting particulars than in allowing amendments. The legislature evidently intended to make the prevision in regard to the amendment of particulars by way of abundant caution to avoid a contention like limitation etc. Section 90(5) provided, therefore, for the petitioner amending the particulars at any time. That provision cannot be construed as in any way limiting the provisions of Section 90(1) which rendered the provisions of the Civil Procedure Code applicable to the trial oi election petitions.

In a recent judgment of the Supreme Court in Basappa v. Ayyappa (C. A. No. 76 of 1958), the distinction between procedure for trial and power possessed by the Tribunal has been pointed out. The provision of Section 90 has been held to relate to procedure for a trial of election petitions. It would, therefore, follow that the application for and directing particulars of an opponent's pleading would be governed by the provisions of the Civil Procedure Code and not only by reason of the power granted by Section 83(3) or Section 90(5) which has taken its place.

23. In the Supreme Court recognised a power in the Tribunal to direct particulars of a corrupt practice. Mr. Nambiar contends that the decision would not apply after the repeal of Section 83(3). I am unable to agree with that contention. The right of a party to obtain particulars of an opponent's pleading is an incident of fair trial and cannot be deemed to be taken away by implication.

24. If Mr. Nambiar's contention that a Tribunal would have no power to direct an amendment of particulars of a corrupt practice were accepted there would equally be no power in the Tribunal to strike out the corrupt practice alleged as no provision is made in the Act for that contingency. But to justify the order of the Election Tribunal, he relied on a passage in 14 Halsbury's Laws of England, p. 492, Vol. 2 of Rogers on Election p. 191 and the decision in . The authorities relied on recognise a power in the Tribunal to strike out in a case where there has been a default in complying with a previous order directing particulars.

The learned counsel also relied on . In that case it was held that on the terms of Section 90(5) there would be no power in an Election Tribunal to direct the furnishing of particulars in respect of an opponent's pleadings, and that there would be equally no power to strike out the pleadings for default of furnishing particulars if directed. The learned Judges also held that material facts in a pleading could not be struck out. They, however, held that it was open to the Tribunal to find that the particulars given in a petition were insufficient for trial.

25. The distinction between a material fact and particulars has been stated in Bruce v. Odhams Press Ltd. 1936-1-K. B. 697, 712. Material fact is stated to mean what is necessary for the purpose of formulating a complete cause of action, the failure to plead which would render the pleading to be struck out under the English rules of Practice; whereas the function of the particulars is to fill in the picture of the plaintiffs cause of action with information sufficiently detailed to put the defendant on guard as to the case he has to meet and to enable him to prepare for trial.

In the latter case the pleading could not he struck out as disclosing no cause of action but if an order for particulars is made and not complied with, that penalty could be imposed for disobedience. Under Order 14 Rule 1 C. P. C. an issue arises when a material fact is affirmed by one party and denied by the other. If therefore, it is held that the material facts in an election petition could not be struck out, the issue would still he there notwithstanding that the particulars were defective. There being no question of issue arising as a result of particulars stated, the issue being only in regard to the material fact, the petition could not be disposed of on the ground that no issue arises.

The trial would have to be proceeded with even if full particulars are not furnished. This would lead to great inconvenience to the Tribunal and hardship to the respondent. I would, therefore, hold that both on authority and on principle, there is a power in the Tribunal to order better particulars and in default of compliance with that order to strike out the pleadings and that the view of the Election Tribunal to the contrary is wrong. Therefore if the respondent felt or the Tribunal found that the petition was defective for want of any particulars, the petitioner should have been directed to furnish the same within a specified time. There would be no jurisdiction in the Tribunal to strike out the pleadings when there has been no previous order directing the furnishing of particulars.

26. Apart from that consideration, I am of opinion that in the instant case the particulars furnished are sufficient except in one or two instances Section 83(1)(b) states that the election petition shall set forth full particulars of any corrupt practice including as full a statement as possible of the names of the parties alleged to have committed such corrupt practice and the date and place of the commission of each such practice. The particulars would necessarily vary according to the nature of the corrupt practice alleged in the petition. When a particular corrupt practice is stated to have been committed, the full-ness of the particulars may to some extent depend on the nature of the corrupt practice.

The section itself contemplates that particulars regarding names etc. should be specified only as far as possible. In particular circumstances, it may not be possible to furnish some of those particulars enumerated in Section 83(1). If the rule is that the names, dates and place of commission of the corrupt practice should DC given in all cases, several of the election offences which would he committed in secret could never come before the Tribunals and the purity of the elections could not be maintained. I have already referred to a passage in Vol. 2 of Rogers on Elections p. 191 where it is stated that particulars to be ordered will vary with the circumstances.

27. The learned counsel for the responded relies upon the decision in Bhauvanesh Bhushan v. Election Tribunal, in support of his contention that under Section 83 of the Act in giving full particulars there must be at least the bare minimum of three particulars, namely, the names of the parties, who committed the corrupt practices, the date and place of the commission of the correct practices.

28. Reference was next made to the decision in the Supreme Court held after referring to Section 83(2) that the particular should depend on the nature of the allegations and that the requirement of full particulars is one that has got to be complied with, with sufficient fullness and clarification, so as to prevent the enquiry front being turned into a rambling and roving inquisition.

29. In the instant case the charges made against the respondent have been already set out. The first portion of the charges, set out in para IV-A namely, items 1 to 4 relate to bribery of a person to stand or not to stand as a candidate. The substantial contention on behalf of the respondent is that the date of giving of thebribe has not been given. A bribe would nonetheless be a bribe whether it is paid on one day or another. The necessity for fixing the time is generally to find out whether it had influenced the recipient in doing what he did. This has been pointed out in Parker's Election Agent and Returning Officer 5th Edn. at p. 291. It states,

"The time at which a corrupt act is done, is not, as a matter of law, and except as regards the evidence necessary to prove the offence material provided it is done at a time when it is operative on the election. The section is expressed in very general terms, and does not specify any limitation of time. It has been held that if the corrupt act be committed before the election with a view to influence a voter at the coming election, whether it is one, two or even six years before, it is just as much bribery as if it were committed on the day before, or tile day of, the election. But the bribe must be operative at the time of the election and if it were given long before, and the person bribed died before toe election took place, or both the briber and the person bribed repented and the latter returned the bribe, it will not affect the seat, though it may subject the parties to penalties."

Again at page 292

"But with reference to the evidence required time is however material. It is obvious that where a considerable time intervenes between the bribe and the election, the difficulty of proof is much increased. If the act of bribery is committed shortly before voter has voted, the act will be assumed to be bribery until the contrary is shown and no further proof of any corrupt intent is requisite."

30. The charges in the present case are that the bribes were offered at or about the time of election. The charge being that the respondent and his election agent paid the bribes, the allegation if true would he a matter within the exclusive knowledge of the respondent. In my opinion, it would be putting too great a burden upon the petitioner in such cases to expect him to specify a matter which would have been done in secret. To expect the petitioner to give out the date of the payment of bribe is expecting him to do an almost impossible thing as very rarely bribes would be given openly.

31. As regards the money paid in the various villages the charge is of a general nature. In the petition sufficient particulars have been given as to who distributed the bribes. In 14 Halsbury's Laws of England, at page 278, it is stated,

"Where a charge of general corruption is made, the particulars which arc ordered are necessarily wider, and the names of particular persons alleged to have been bribed or treated will not be ordered. A petitioner will, however, be ordered to specify the character and extent of the corruption alleged."

32. Applying that standard. I am of opinion that the allegations in para IV-A(5) and (6) are suffi-ciently specific to satisfy the requirements of Section 83(1)(b). It is true that para IV-A(7) is vague, but the remedy of the respondent would be to apply for directions for particulars, and for not striking out the paragraph,

33. In the matter of the alleged hiring of vehicles, details as to the actual registration numbers ot the vehicles utilised and also the villages in which they are used have been given. In a matter where large number of voters are taken from those villages, it would be almost impossible to give their names. The principle of the cases in regard to general charge of bribery would, in my opinion, also apply to this comipt practice. I am of opinion that there if no justification for striking out that paragraph, IV-A-8.

34. In paragraph IV(D) it has been stated that report of the policeman's interference in the election has been made to the concerned authorities. Though the allegations in the paragraph can be characterised as vague, there is some definiteness in regard to it in that a report of the incident is stated to have been made to the authorities concerned. In my opinion, this is a matter for the respondent (if he feels the necessity) to require the petitioner to furnish better particulars as to whom the report was made, or from whom the name of the constable and other matters could be found out.

35. As regards the averments in paragraph IV-C, I am of opinion that the non-furnishing of the printed leaflet is not a particular, since particulars are given of the false statement already in the petition and the printed leaflets alleged to have been issued are only evidence of the statement.

36. The contention as to para IV-E of the petition is that the petitioner had an opportunity to go through the accounts produced by the respondent. What is complained is that the various bribes and other expenses adverted to in the earlier paragraphs of the petition were not shown in the accounts, and that therefore the statement of account is wrong. That could not be found out by reference to the existing accounts. That paragraph, therefore depends upon the petitioner proving the earlier statement. The respondent could only show that on the allegations no charge is made out. That however is not the case.

37. I am, therefore, of opinion that except in regard to paragraphs IV-A (7) and IV-D, the petitioner has set out the particulars as best as he could under the circumstances. In regard to paras IV-(7) and IV-D the respondent may if he choose demand particulars. There is however no justification for the Tribunal to have struck out the various paragraphs in the election petition referred to above. Such an order is without jurisdiction and is liable to be revised by this Court under Article 227 of the Constitution. The order is set aside and the Election Commissioner is directed to proceed with the enquiry into the election petition with the petition as it stood before the order, in accordance with law. The petitioner will be entitled to his costs from the respondent.

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