The Supreme Court on Wednesday pulled upthe Centre for not taking action against lawmakers some of whose assetshave seen a massive jump of up to 500 per cent between two elections.
A bench headed by Justice J Chelameswar questioned the Centre and asked whether any investigation has ever been conducted into discrepancies of assets disclosed by the leaders in theirpolls affidavits and what they show in their income tax returns.
The apex court said though the government was saying that it was not averse to electoral reforms but ithas not placed the necessary details before it so far.“Even the information furnished before it in an affidavit by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) was not complete. You better file a detailed affidavit. This affidavit which you have filed is nothing but typed papers. Do not make vague statements. If the CBDT has taken some action,please disclose what action has been taken,” the bench observed while asking the government to file a detailed affidavit before it by September 12.
The observation came while it was hearing a plea seeking disclosure of sources of income by the candidatescontesting elections when they file nomination for elections. The arguments remained inconclusive and will continue on Thursday.During thehearing, Additional Solicitor General P S Narasimha appearing for the Centre said free and fair election was integral to the democratic structure of the country and they would welcome any direction passed by the court on this aspect.
The SC had earlier issued notices to theCentre and the Election Commission on a plea by NGO Lok Prahari seekinginclusion of a column in the nomination form seeking details of the sources of income.