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Election in democracy has its own sanctity, its process cannot be stalled: Supreme Court

Elections in democracy have their own sanctity and their process cannot be stalled, the Supreme Court said on Wednesday, after a lawyer alleged voters of Rampur Sadar assembly constituency in Uttar Pradesh were beaten up by police and forced to confine themselves to their homes during the bypoll held on December 5.

He said, “There is an extraordinary circumstance, which has happened two days ago during the polling for by-election in Rampur Sadar. Voters were beaten up black and blue on a large scale and they were forced to be confined in their homes so that they do not cast their votes. Even I was injured in a scuffle with the policemen.” The bench asked the lawyer about the day of the poll and when the votes will be counted.

When the lawyer said the counting is scheduled for Thursday, the court responded, saying, “Sorry, we cannot pass any order like this. Where is your petition? You mention the matter tomorrow morning.”

“You see, in democracy, elections have its own sanctity and its process cannot be stalled,” the bench told the advocate, who said he himself was witness to the “atrocities” by police as he is a voter in the constituency.

The Supreme Court held that the word ‘election’ in Article 329 (b) connotes the entire electoral process commencing with the issue of the notification calling the election and culminating in the declaration of result, and that the electoral process
once started could not be interfered with at any intermediary stage by Courts.

The bench told him it is not casting any aspersions on him but only asking him to follow the process.

The lawyer, who mentioned the matter just before the bench was about to rise, said he has nothing to gain by stating the facts.

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