EC summons Yadav over complaints against candidacy

Kathmandu, November 13

The Election Commission has summoned parliamentary first-past-the-post candidate from Sarlahi-4 Shivpujan Ray Yadav tomorrow in connection with a complaint lodged against his candidacy.

Yadav, a former Constituent Assembly member, is a candidate from Sarlahi-4 from the CPN-Maoist Centre.

Returning Officer of Sarlahi-4 Tekendra Subedi told THT that a complaint was lodged against Yadav’s candidacy demanding that it be cancelled, as he was convicted by the Special Court for misusing his diplomatic passport.

“We have directed him to be present at the office of Chief Returning Officer tomorrow for investigation,” Subedi said over phone from Sarlahi.

He said that the EC’s district office would record his statement and send it to the central office for final decision. Yadav was convicted of misusing his red (diplomatic) passport and awarded a jail sentence of four months and fined Rs 15,000 by the Special Court in 2015.

Subedi said District Election Office, Sarlahi, had already sent the complaint to the EC’s central office via postal service.

Yadav said that he should not be barred from contesting elections, as his case was subjudice in the Supreme Court. “My opponents are after me and they are trying to prevent me from contesting elections, as they know my prospects of winning elections are high,” said Yadav. He said that the SC had fixed final hearing of his case for December 10. He said his case was different from that of Nepali Congress leader Govinda Raj Joshi’s.

The EC had recently annulled Joshi’s candidacy in Tanahun-1 on the grounds that he had been convicted by the Special Court in a graft case. Joshi has filed an appeal at the Supreme Court which is sub-judice now.

“Joshi had served jail term and was released on bail. My case is different,” he claimed. He said that he would show the SC’s letter to EC officials arguing that he should not be prevented from exercising his constitutional rights.

EC’s Joint Attorney Geeta Prasad Timalsina said the EC had not yet received a copy of the complaint sent by the office of chief returning officer, Sarlahi district. He said that the poll panel would take appropriate decision on the complaint filed against Yadav’s candidacy.

He said that over 200 election code violation cases were registered with the EC. “We have sought clarifications from some candidates and have been looking into some other complaints,” said Timalsina.