Singhvi moves HC challenging his defeat in RS poll through draw of lots

Singhvi moves HC challenging his defeat in RS poll through draw of lots

Weeks after he lost the Rajya Sabha election from Himachal Pradesh, Congress leader Abhishek Manu Singhvi on Saturday filed an application in the high court challenging the interpretation of draw of lots rules by the poll officer after there was a tie in the poll.

BJP nominee Harsh Mahajan won the February 27 election through draw of lots after both candidates secured 34 votes each.

"There is nothing in the law, neither in the act nor in the rules which compels an interpretation which requires that the person whose name is drawn in the draw of lots is a loser," Singhvi told reporters after filing his petition in the Himachal Pradesh High Court.

In spite of the fact that the Congress had a strength of 40 members and the support of three Independents in the assembly, both the candidates polled 34 votes each as nine legislators -- six Congress rebels and three Independents -- voted in favour of BJP nominee Harsh Mahajan.

The winner was announced by a draw of lots and under the procedure followed by the election officer, the person whose name was drawn in the draw of lots was declared the loser.

"It defies common sense, old tradition and practices, anywhere and everywhere in the world that whenever there is a tie between two people, the person whose name is drawn...should be the winner and not the loser. If our contentions are accepted ultimately by the high court, the result declared would have to be declared to be wrong.

"There is a strange procedure for filing the election petition which requires the petitioner to be present himself to file it and that is why you find me here," he said.

The Congress in the state plunged into the crisis after the Rajya Sabha election defeat.