Election authorities reject Ajay Maken's plea opposing ND Gupta's nomination to Rajya Sabha

New Delhi: Election authorities on Monday rejected a petition of Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken seeking cancellation of the nomination of the AAP's candidate for Rajya Sabha, ND Gupta, for allegedly holding an office of profit.

The office of Delhi's Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) said the "Returning Officer has accepted the nomination of Narain Dass Gupta and the case has been disposed of".

In his objection filed with the returning officer on Saturday, Maken claimed that Gupta was "currently holding the office of a trustee of the National Pension System Trust. He was appointed on 30 March."

File image of Congress leader Ajay Maken. Reuters

File image of Congress leader Ajay Maken. Reuters

"The matter was examined and found that the above provision shows that the trust, for the purposes of day to day functioning, management and administration of the Trust, may appoint a sub-committee of Trustees. "Therefore, it seems an internal arrangement that the Trust had made for its working and not an independent office of Chairman. In view of this, the objection on this account was not found valid," read the order issued by the election authorities.

Maken also alleged that Gupta held the office of the chairman of the Audit Committee of the National Pension System Trust. Gupta had rejected the charges.

The AAP earlier countered the allegation, claiming that Maken was trying to gain cheap publicity through frivolous objections as the law did not forbid trustees from contesting. A hearing was thus scheduled for Monday for both the parties in the case.

In his response to the returning officer's notice on Maken's objections, Gupta said he was appointed as a trustee of the NPS on 30 March last year but he resigned from the trust on 29 December, way before the filing of his nomination.

"It is submitted that the National Pension System is not an office. The said trust is not an office under the government and also is not an office of profit under the government.

"In any event, as an abundant caution, the said trust is excluded in the Parliament (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1959," Gupta said.

Updated Date: Jan 08, 2018 14:38 PM

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