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Indian Case Summary

Indian National Congress (I) vs Institute Of Social Welfare & Ors on 10 May, 2002 – Case Summary

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In the case of Indian National Congress (I) vs Institute Of Social Welfare & Ors on 10 May, 2002, the Supreme Court of India was confronted with a significant question concerning the powers of the Election Commission of India under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951. The primary issue was whether the Election Commission had the authority to de-register or cancel the registration of a political party on the grounds that it had called for a hartal (strike) by force, intimidation, or coercion, thereby violating the provisions of the Constitution of India.

The case arose from directions issued by the High Court of Kerala on writ petitions filed for enforcement of a decision in the case of Communist Party of India (Marxist) vs. Bharat Kumar & Ors. AIR (1998) SC 184. The Supreme Court had previously held that there is a distinction between a ‘bundh’ (general strike) and a ‘hartal’. A call for a bundh involves coercion of others into towing the lines of those who called for the bundh, and this act was deemed unconstitutional as it violated the rights and liberty of other citizens guaranteed under the Constitution.

Despite this ruling, it was alleged that political parties in Kerala continued to call for bundhs under the guise of hartals. The High Court issued orders to the government of Kerala to take appropriate measures to enforce the Supreme Court’s ruling, but these proved ineffective. Some of the writ petitioners submitted representations to the Election Commission of India, requesting proceedings against the registered political parties for de-registration as they had contravened the provisions of the Constitution. However, the Election Commission took no action in this regard.

The High Court of Kerala held that while a call for a hartal or advocating it in the strict sense could not be deemed illegal, it becomes problematic when it infringes on the rights of others. The High Court found that what was being called a hartal was, in fact, a form of a bundh involving intimidation and coercion. The High Court held that although Section 29A of the Act does not expressly empower the Election Commission of India to de-register a registered political party for having contravened the provisions of the Constitution, the Election Commission of India has the power to initiate proceedings for de-registration against a political party for having violated the constitutional provisions.

The decision of the High Court was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Indian National Congress (I) and other parties. The appellants argued that there was no express provision in the Act to cancel the registration of a political party under Section 29A of the Act, and as such, no proceedings could be taken by the Election Commission of India against a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution. They also argued that the Election Commission, while exercising the power to register a political party under Section 29A of the Act, acts quasi-judicially and once a political party is registered, no power of review having been conferred on the Election Commission of India, the Election Commission has no power to de-register a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution or committed a breach of undertaking given to the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

The Supreme Court, after considering the arguments and the relevant provisions of the Act and rules framed thereunder, held that neither under the Symbols Order nor under Section 29A of the Act, the Election Commission has been conferred with any express power to de-register a political party registered under Section 29A of the Act on the ground that it has either violated the provisions of the Constitution or any provision of undertaking given before the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

This case is significant as it addresses the powers of the Election Commission of India concerning the registration and de-registration of political parties

In the case of Indian National Congress (I) vs Institute Of Social Welfare & Ors on 10 May, 2002, the Supreme Court of India was confronted with a significant question concerning the powers of the Election Commission of India under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951. The primary issue was whether the Election Commission had the authority to de-register or cancel the registration of a political party on the grounds that it had called for a hartal (strike) by force, intimidation, or coercion, thereby violating the provisions of the Constitution of India.

The case arose from directions issued by the High Court of Kerala on writ petitions filed for enforcement of a decision in the case of Communist Party of India (Marxist) vs. Bharat Kumar & Ors. AIR (1998) SC 184. The Supreme Court had previously held that there is a distinction between a ‘bundh’ (general strike) and a ‘hartal’. A call for a bundh involves coercion of others into towing the lines of those who called for the bundh, and this act was deemed unconstitutional as it violated the rights and liberty of other citizens guaranteed under the Constitution.

Despite this ruling, it was alleged that political parties in Kerala continued to call for bundhs under the guise of hartals. The High Court issued orders to the government of Kerala to take appropriate measures to enforce the Supreme Court’s ruling, but these proved ineffective. Some of the writ petitioners submitted representations to the Election Commission of India, requesting proceedings against the registered political parties for de-registration as they had contravened the provisions of the Constitution. However, the Election Commission took no action in this regard.

The High Court of Kerala held that while a call for a hartal or advocating it in the strict sense could not be deemed illegal, it becomes problematic when it infringes on the rights of others. The High Court found that what was being called a hartal was, in fact, a form of a bundh involving intimidation and coercion. The High Court held that although Section 29A of the Act does not expressly empower the Election Commission of India to de-register a registered political party for having contravened the provisions of the Constitution, the Election Commission of India has the power to initiate proceedings for de-registration against a political party for having violated the constitutional provisions.

The decision of the High Court was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Indian National Congress (I) and other parties. The appellants argued that there was no express provision in the Act to cancel the registration of a political party under Section 29A of the Act, and as such, no proceedings could be taken by the Election Commission of India against a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution. They also argued that the Election Commission, while exercising the power to register a political party under Section 29A of the Act, acts quasi-judicially and once a political party is registered, no power of review having been conferred on the Election Commission of India, the Election Commission has no power to de-register a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution or committed a breach of undertaking given to the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

The Supreme Court, after considering the arguments and the relevant provisions of the Act and rules framed thereunder, held that neither under the Symbols Order nor under Section 29A of the Act, the Election Commission has been conferred with any express power to de-register a political party registered under Section 29A of the Act on the ground that it has either violated the provisions of the Constitution or any provision of undertaking given before the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

This case is significant as it addresses the powers of the Election Commission of India concerning the registration and de-registration of political parties

In the case of Indian National Congress (I) vs Institute Of Social Welfare & Ors on 10 May, 2002, the Supreme Court of India was confronted with a significant question concerning the powers of the Election Commission of India under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951. The primary issue was whether the Election Commission had the authority to de-register or cancel the registration of a political party on the grounds that it had called for a hartal (strike) by force, intimidation, or coercion, thereby violating the provisions of the Constitution of India.

The case arose from directions issued by the High Court of Kerala on writ petitions filed for enforcement of a decision in the case of Communist Party of India (Marxist) vs. Bharat Kumar & Ors. AIR (1998) SC 184. The Supreme Court had previously held that there is a distinction between a ‘bundh’ (general strike) and a ‘hartal’. A call for a bundh involves coercion of others into towing the lines of those who called for the bundh, and this act was deemed unconstitutional as it violated the rights and liberty of other citizens guaranteed under the Constitution.

Despite this ruling, it was alleged that political parties in Kerala continued to call for bundhs under the guise of hartals. The High Court issued orders to the government of Kerala to take appropriate measures to enforce the Supreme Court’s ruling, but these proved ineffective. Some of the writ petitioners submitted representations to the Election Commission of India, requesting proceedings against the registered political parties for de-registration as they had contravened the provisions of the Constitution. However, the Election Commission took no action in this regard.

The High Court of Kerala held that while a call for a hartal or advocating it in the strict sense could not be deemed illegal, it becomes problematic when it infringes on the rights of others. The High Court found that what was being called a hartal was, in fact, a form of a bundh involving intimidation and coercion. The High Court held that although Section 29A of the Act does not expressly empower the Election Commission of India to de-register a registered political party for having contravened the provisions of the Constitution, the Election Commission of India has the power to initiate proceedings for de-registration against a political party for having violated the constitutional provisions.

The decision of the High Court was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Indian National Congress (I) and other parties. The appellants argued that there was no express provision in the Act to cancel the registration of a political party under Section 29A of the Act, and as such, no proceedings could be taken by the Election Commission of India against a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution. They also argued that the Election Commission, while exercising the power to register a political party under Section 29A of the Act, acts quasi-judicially and once a political party is registered, no power of review having been conferred on the Election Commission of India, the Election Commission has no power to de-register a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution or committed a breach of undertaking given to the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

The Supreme Court, after considering the arguments and the relevant provisions of the Act and rules framed thereunder, held that neither under the Symbols Order nor under Section 29A of the Act, the Election Commission has been conferred with any express power to de-register a political party registered under Section 29A of the Act on the ground that it has either violated the provisions of the Constitution or any provision of undertaking given before the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

This case is significant as it addresses the powers of the Election Commission of India concerning the registration and de-registration of political parties

In the case of Indian National Congress (I) vs Institute Of Social Welfare & Ors on 10 May, 2002, the Supreme Court of India was confronted with a significant question concerning the powers of the Election Commission of India under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951. The primary issue was whether the Election Commission had the authority to de-register or cancel the registration of a political party on the grounds that it had called for a hartal (strike) by force, intimidation, or coercion, thereby violating the provisions of the Constitution of India.

The case arose from directions issued by the High Court of Kerala on writ petitions filed for enforcement of a decision in the case of Communist Party of India (Marxist) vs. Bharat Kumar & Ors. AIR (1998) SC 184. The Supreme Court had previously held that there is a distinction between a ‘bundh’ (general strike) and a ‘hartal’. A call for a bundh involves coercion of others into towing the lines of those who called for the bundh, and this act was deemed unconstitutional as it violated the rights and liberty of other citizens guaranteed under the Constitution.

Despite this ruling, it was alleged that political parties in Kerala continued to call for bundhs under the guise of hartals. The High Court issued orders to the government of Kerala to take appropriate measures to enforce the Supreme Court’s ruling, but these proved ineffective. Some of the writ petitioners submitted representations to the Election Commission of India, requesting proceedings against the registered political parties for de-registration as they had contravened the provisions of the Constitution. However, the Election Commission took no action in this regard.

The High Court of Kerala held that while a call for a hartal or advocating it in the strict sense could not be deemed illegal, it becomes problematic when it infringes on the rights of others. The High Court found that what was being called a hartal was, in fact, a form of a bundh involving intimidation and coercion. The High Court held that although Section 29A of the Act does not expressly empower the Election Commission of India to de-register a registered political party for having contravened the provisions of the Constitution, the Election Commission of India has the power to initiate proceedings for de-registration against a political party for having violated the constitutional provisions.

The decision of the High Court was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Indian National Congress (I) and other parties. The appellants argued that there was no express provision in the Act to cancel the registration of a political party under Section 29A of the Act, and as such, no proceedings could be taken by the Election Commission of India against a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution. They also argued that the Election Commission, while exercising the power to register a political party under Section 29A of the Act, acts quasi-judicially and once a political party is registered, no power of review having been conferred on the Election Commission of India, the Election Commission has no power to de-register a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution or committed a breach of undertaking given to the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

The Supreme Court, after considering the arguments and the relevant provisions of the Act and rules framed thereunder, held that neither under the Symbols Order nor under Section 29A of the Act, the Election Commission has been conferred with any express power to de-register a political party registered under Section 29A of the Act on the ground that it has either violated the provisions of the Constitution or any provision of undertaking given before the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

This case is significant as it addresses the powers of the Election Commission of India concerning the registration and de-registration of political parties

In the case of Indian National Congress (I) vs Institute Of Social Welfare & Ors on 10 May, 2002, the Supreme Court of India was confronted with a significant question concerning the powers of the Election Commission of India under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951. The primary issue was whether the Election Commission had the authority to de-register or cancel the registration of a political party on the grounds that it had called for a hartal (strike) by force, intimidation, or coercion, thereby violating the provisions of the Constitution of India.

The case arose from directions issued by the High Court of Kerala on writ petitions filed for enforcement of a decision in the case of Communist Party of India (Marxist) vs. Bharat Kumar & Ors. AIR (1998) SC 184. The Supreme Court had previously held that there is a distinction between a ‘bundh’ (general strike) and a ‘hartal’. A call for a bundh involves coercion of others into towing the lines of those who called for the bundh, and this act was deemed unconstitutional as it violated the rights and liberty of other citizens guaranteed under the Constitution.

Despite this ruling, it was alleged that political parties in Kerala continued to call for bundhs under the guise of hartals. The High Court issued orders to the government of Kerala to take appropriate measures to enforce the Supreme Court’s ruling, but these proved ineffective. Some of the writ petitioners submitted representations to the Election Commission of India, requesting proceedings against the registered political parties for de-registration as they had contravened the provisions of the Constitution. However, the Election Commission took no action in this regard.

The High Court of Kerala held that while a call for a hartal or advocating it in the strict sense could not be deemed illegal, it becomes problematic when it infringes on the rights of others. The High Court found that what was being called a hartal was, in fact, a form of a bundh involving intimidation and coercion. The High Court held that although Section 29A of the Act does not expressly empower the Election Commission of India to de-register a registered political party for having contravened the provisions of the Constitution, the Election Commission of India has the power to initiate proceedings for de-registration against a political party for having violated the constitutional provisions.

The decision of the High Court was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Indian National Congress (I) and other parties. The appellants argued that there was no express provision in the Act to cancel the registration of a political party under Section 29A of the Act, and as such, no proceedings could be taken by the Election Commission of India against a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution. They also argued that the Election Commission, while exercising the power to register a political party under Section 29A of the Act, acts quasi-judicially and once a political party is registered, no power of review having been conferred on the Election Commission of India, the Election Commission has no power to de-register a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution or committed a breach of undertaking given to the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

The Supreme Court, after considering the arguments and the relevant provisions of the Act and rules framed thereunder, held that neither under the Symbols Order nor under Section 29A of the Act, the Election Commission has been conferred with any express power to de-register a political party registered under Section 29A of the Act on the ground that it has either violated the provisions of the Constitution or any provision of undertaking given before the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

This case is significant as it addresses the powers of the Election Commission of India concerning the registration and de-registration of political parties

In the case of Indian National Congress (I) vs Institute Of Social Welfare & Ors on 10 May, 2002, the Supreme Court of India was confronted with a significant question concerning the powers of the Election Commission of India under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951. The primary issue was whether the Election Commission had the authority to de-register or cancel the registration of a political party on the grounds that it had called for a hartal (strike) by force, intimidation, or coercion, thereby violating the provisions of the Constitution of India.

The case arose from directions issued by the High Court of Kerala on writ petitions filed for enforcement of a decision in the case of Communist Party of India (Marxist) vs. Bharat Kumar & Ors. AIR (1998) SC 184. The Supreme Court had previously held that there is a distinction between a ‘bundh’ (general strike) and a ‘hartal’. A call for a bundh involves coercion of others into towing the lines of those who called for the bundh, and this act was deemed unconstitutional as it violated the rights and liberty of other citizens guaranteed under the Constitution.

Despite this ruling, it was alleged that political parties in Kerala continued to call for bundhs under the guise of hartals. The High Court issued orders to the government of Kerala to take appropriate measures to enforce the Supreme Court’s ruling, but these proved ineffective. Some of the writ petitioners submitted representations to the Election Commission of India, requesting proceedings against the registered political parties for de-registration as they had contravened the provisions of the Constitution. However, the Election Commission took no action in this regard.

The High Court of Kerala held that while a call for a hartal or advocating it in the strict sense could not be deemed illegal, it becomes problematic when it infringes on the rights of others. The High Court found that what was being called a hartal was, in fact, a form of a bundh involving intimidation and coercion. The High Court held that although Section 29A of the Act does not expressly empower the Election Commission of India to de-register a registered political party for having contravened the provisions of the Constitution, the Election Commission of India has the power to initiate proceedings for de-registration against a political party for having violated the constitutional provisions.

The decision of the High Court was challenged in the Supreme Court by the Indian National Congress (I) and other parties. The appellants argued that there was no express provision in the Act to cancel the registration of a political party under Section 29A of the Act, and as such, no proceedings could be taken by the Election Commission of India against a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution. They also argued that the Election Commission, while exercising the power to register a political party under Section 29A of the Act, acts quasi-judicially and once a political party is registered, no power of review having been conferred on the Election Commission of India, the Election Commission has no power to de-register a political party for having violated the provisions of the Constitution or committed a breach of undertaking given to the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

The Supreme Court, after considering the arguments and the relevant provisions of the Act and rules framed thereunder, held that neither under the Symbols Order nor under Section 29A of the Act, the Election Commission has been conferred with any express power to de-register a political party registered under Section 29A of the Act on the ground that it has either violated the provisions of the Constitution or any provision of undertaking given before the Election Commission at the time of its registration.

This case is significant as it addresses the powers of the Election Commission of India concerning the registration and de-registration of political parties

In the case of Indian National Congress (I) vs Institute Of Social Welfare & Ors on 10 May, 2002, the Supreme Court of India was confronted with a significant question concerning the powers of the Election Commission of India under Section 29A of the Representation of the People Act, 1951. The primary issue was whether the Election Commission had the authority to de-register or cancel the registration of a political party on the grounds that it had called for a hartal (strike) by force, intimidation, or coercion, thereby violating the provisions of the Constitution of India.

The case arose from directions issued by the High Court of Kerala on writ petitions filed for enforcement of a decision in the case of Communist Party of India (Marxist) vs. Bharat Kumar & Ors. AIR (1998) SC 184. The Supreme Court had previously held that there is a distinction between a ‘bundh’ (general strike) and a ‘hartal’. A call for a bundh involves coercion of others into towing the lines of those who called for the bundh, and this act was deemed unconstitutional as it violated the rights and liberty of other citizens guaranteed under the Constitution.

Despite this ruling, it was alleged that political parties in Kerala continued to call for bundhs under the guise of hartals. The High Court issued orders to the government of Kerala to take appropriate measures to enforce the Supreme Court’s ruling, but these proved