Patna, May 8: Patna High Court today dismissed a plea challenging Lalu Prasad’s continuance as RJD president after his conviction in the fodder scam.
The PIL had also questioned the legitimacy of Lalu distributing the party symbol to candidates for the ongoing Lok Sabha elections and asked for it to be termed null and void. Samrat Choudhary, a rebel RJD MLA from Parbatta in Khagaria district, had filed the PIL. A single bench of the court of Justice Navin Sinha passed Thursday’s order.
Petitioner’s lawyer S.K. Mangalam said the court dismissed the plea on the ground that elections are under way and it was not possible to entertain such a petition at this juncture. Mangalam said they would file the petition again once the elections are over.
Choudhary had in April approached the Election Commission, seeking its intervention to cancel RJD candidates’ nomination papers on the ground that the tickets bore the signature of a convicted party president.
Lalu had earlier dismissed the charges against him as “baseless”. He had said: “There is no provision in the party constitution that prevents me from being party president.” He also said Choudhary had betrayed the RJD. “As RJD president I have the freedom to take party-related decisions and no court can intervene in this,” he had said.
Choudhary told The Telegraph: “I stand by my stance. After the elections, I will file the PIL, challenging Lalu as party president, again. The court only said it is not possible to entertain the PIL at this juncture. It has not questioned the PIL’s legitimacy per se.”