Madras High Court imposed fine of Rs. 1 Lakh on Indian National Congress and eight other political parties

A Public Interest Litigation (PIL) was filed at Madras High Court seeking to direct the Election Commission to instruct the electoral candidates to submit their Election Manifestos separately, focusing on his or her contesting constituency. The Court on March 7 had directed for about sixteen Political Parties to appear in court in order to know their views on the proposal.

A handful of parties appeared through their counsel on the given date with a request to serve the notice again and add their names in the cause list. Therefore, the case was then listed to be heard on Wednesday.

The Madras High Court imposed fine of Rs. 1 Lakh each on nine Political Parties, after another dismal turnout yesterday. The Court found it appropriate to impose costs on the parties who despite repeated summons failed to appear before the court.

The Bench mentioned, “Even though all these political parties aspire to rule the country/State and to have a considerable number of Members of Parliament seats, are not bothered to make their appearance before this Court. If all the political parties who have ruled or aspire to rule the State do not respond to the Court notice, one cannot expect the ordinary people to respond to the Court notice. The political parties should be responsible units of democracy and role models for their worker, as they have got lakhs and lakhs of followers and members.“

Further, the court ordered parties to pay the amount to the Widows War Association within two weeks. On non-compliance with the order, the court has instructed the concerned revenue authorities to recover the amount by auctioning the properties of the political parties.

The nine political parties imposed with costs are Indian National Congress, DesiyaMurpokkuDravidaKazhagam, Pattali Makkal Katchhi, Viduthalai Siruthaikal Katchi, Samuthuva Makkal Katchi, the Tamil Nadu Muslim League, the Forward Block, Marxist Communist Party of India, and the Communist Party of India, and the parties who appeared before the Court are the Bharathiya Janatha Party (BJP), All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), Naam Tamilar Katchi (NTK), and the Amma Makkal Munnetra Kazhagam (AMMK).

The matter is further listed on March 19.

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