‘No bypoll at Wayanad now’, says EC after Rahul Gandhi’s Disqualification

NEW DELHI: The Election Commission today did not announce byelections for the Wayanad Lok Sabha constituency in Kerala, which has fallen vacant after Rahul Gandhi’s disqualification as an MP following his two-year jail sentence in a defamation case.

Briefing about the Karnataka Assembly polls, the Chief election Commissioner of India Rajiv Kumar added that “they are not in a hurry to conduct by-polls at Wayanad”. The Election Commission of India said, “the trial court has given Rahul Gandhi one month time to file an appeal, therefore they cannot conduct by-polls at Wayanad, Kerala.”

“There is no hurry, we will wait. There is no hurry to do it before exhausting that particular remedy that the trial court had accorded. We will take a call after that,” the chief election commissioner said. He said the vacancy in the Wayanad parliamentary party was notified on March 23 this year and as per the law, a poll has to be conducted within six months.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday visited the party’s office in the Parliament House complex and met some members there. As per media reports he spent 20 minutes in the office and met Shiv Sena (UBT) MP Sanjay Raut and others. He later left the premises with mother Sonia Gandhi. Sources added that Congress leaders K C Venugopal and Adhir Ranjan Chowdury were also present at the party’s parliamentary office.

A plethora of protests erupted after the Wayanad MP was disqualified on Friday following a conviction by Surat court in 2019 defamation case.

Karnataka will vote on May 10 to elect a new government and members to its 224-seat assembly, the Election Commission announced on Wednesday. The results will be declared on May 13.

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