NEW DELHI: A division bench comprising Chief Justice Satish Chandra Sharma and Justice Saurabh Banerjee of the Delhi High Court on Wednesday granted the Centre another 4 weeks' time to file its response on a petition for de-registering political parties having names with "caste, religious, ethnic or linguistic" connotations and flags that resemble the national tri-color.
It was hearing a petition by Delhi BJP leader advocate Ashwini Upadhyay. The plea stated that the use of names with religious connotations or symbols similar to the national flag or emblem might prejudicially affect the poll prospects of a candidate and would amount to a corrupt practice under the Representation of the People Act (RPA),1951.
Next hearing kept on October 18
The counsel for the Law Ministry sought two weeks to respond. The court fixed the next hearing on October 18, allowing four weeks to the Centre to reply.
The plea sought directions to ECI to review the political parties, registered with caste, religious, ethnic, or linguistic connotations and ensure that they are not using a flag, similar to the national flag, and de-register them if they fail to change it within three months.
Political parties with religious connotations
“Presently there are many political parties such as Hindu Sena, All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen, Indian Union Muslim League, etc. with religious, caste, ethnic, and linguistic connotations. In addition, there are political parties including the Indian National Congress, which use a flag similar to the national flag, which is against the spirit of Section 123 of the RPA, 1951”, the plea read.
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