Supreme Court orders Manipur High Court to dispose of election petition against Th Shyamkumar

Th Shyamkumar was alleged to have filed a false affidavit by not disclosing a pending appeal against him in the Delhi High Court during the 2017 General Election.

A double bench of the Supreme Court of India comprising Justice Rohinton Fali Nariman and Justice Navin Sinha Tuesday ordered the Manipur High Court to complete the hearing of pending election petition against Thounaojam Shyamkumar within two months.

The petition was filed by Dr Nimai Chand Luwang, former minister and spokesperson of BJP Manipur Pradesh, alleging that Th Shyamkumar filed a false affidavit by not disclosing a pending appeal against him in the Delhi High Court during the 2017 General Election.

On October 2, 2006, Th Shyamkumar was arrested by the Delhi Police (Special Cell) along with two senior members of the proscribed UNLF from the Indira Gandhi International Airport, New Delhi. He was to take a flight to Kathmandu.

After the arrest, Shyamkumar was lodged in Tihar jail and contested the state Assembly election in 2007 from Andro Assembly constituency, Imphal East district. Subsequently, he was released on bail after being elected as the MLA Andro. Later, he was acquitted by Delhi District Court in 2011.

The state filed an appeal against the court order in 2012, and was registered against him in the Delhi High Court in 2014 and is currently pending.

Delhi Police Special Cell DCP Sanjeev Yadav just before the 2017 Manipur Elections had also claimed a linked between MLA Th Shyamkumar and Ranjit Khoirom, Commander-in-Chief of KCP (Porei-Meitei) who was arrested in Delhi. Sanabam Inaobi a close associate of the MLA was subsequently arrested by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

Th Shyamkumar was recently disqualified from the Manipur Legislative Assembly under the 10th Schedule of the Constitution by the Speaker of Manipur Legislative Assembly after directions from Supreme Court. He was elected on a Congress ticket in the last Assembly election. However, he changed in allegiance immediately and supported the BJP led coalition Government in Manipur. Shyamkumar sworn in as a cabinet ministerial even before he sworn in as an MLA.

Dr Luwang, expressed his confidence that he will win in his fight against the criminalisation of the political institution in Manipur and justice will be swiftly be delivered by the Manipur High Court in this case.

Dr Luwang appealed to the people of Manipur to be vigilant against the criminalisation of the political institution and support candidates who are free from any criminal antecedents. He expressed deep concern in the increasing cases of involvement of people with criminal records of drug smuggling, terrorism, murder, extortion, kidnapping with the political system in Manipur.

Nimai Chand Luwang is a medical doctor and was previously elected for five terms to the Manipur Legislative Assembly. He also served as Health and Education Minister several times in the state and fought on a BJP ticket from Andro in the 2017 General Elections.

First Published:July 30, 2020, 8:12 a.m.

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