‘Electoral Offence’: Himachal HC Extends Anticipatory Bail Of Ashish Sharma, Rakesh Sharma Till April 26

Kota Court

The Himachal Pradesh High Court on Monday has extended the interim anticipatory bail of Hamirpur independent MLA Ashish Sharma and Rakesh Sharma, father of Gagret MLA Chaitanya Sharma, who were booked by the police for the electoral offences and criminal conspiracy till April 26.

Ashish, (now BJP candidate from Gagret Vidhan Sabha), and Chetanya are among the 9 MLAs, including 6 Congress rebels and 3 independents, who voted in favour of BJP nominee Harsh Mahajan in the recently held Rajya Sabha polls. All of them later joined the BJP.

Advocate General Anoop Rattan stated that the High Court has extended the interim bail till April 26 and asked them to join the investigations and appear before the investigation officer whenever called.

He stated, “We have mentioned in our status report that Rakesh Sharma, a retired bureaucrat, despite orders of the court did not join the investigations and threatened the investigation officer when asked to appear before the police.”

Rattan stated that meanwhile, both the accused have filed a fresh application in the High Court seeking quashing of the FIR against them and the court has asked the state government to file its reply and posted the case for April 26.

Last month, Shimla Police registered a case against these 2 and other MLAs over “electoral offences”, bribery and criminal conspiracy related to the recent Rajya Sabha polls in which 6 Congress MLAs voted for the BJP candidate from the state.

The case against them was registered under sections 171 c and e (undue influence on elections and bribery) and 120 b (criminal conspiracy) of the IPC and sections 7 & 8 (public servant taking undue advantage) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, on the basis of a complaint lodged by Congress MLAs Sanjay Avasthi and Bhuvneshwar Gaur.

In their complaint, the Congress legislators alleged “horse trading and misuse of money to influence the elections” and criminal conspiracy, and sought investigation on charges of money trading, misuse of helicopter and security forces and criminal misconduct.

Recommended For You

About the Author: Meera Verma