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Thursday, May 30, 2024

Naba Sarania’s nomination cancelled

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KOKRAJHAR, April 21: The nomination papers of Kokrajhar MP Naba Kumar Sarania, who was looking for a third consecutive term, were cancelled on Sunday, officials said.

Returning Officer Pradeep Kumar Dwivedi told reporters the nomination papers of Sarania were found invalid, and hence cancelled.

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“Out of the 16 nominations filed till the last day on April 19, 15 were found valid. The candidates who are willing to withdraw their nominations can do the same by 3 pm tomorrow,” he said.

The Kokrajhar constituency, which is reserved for Scheduled Tribe, will go to the polls in the third phase on May 7. The authority had adjourned the scrutiny for this seat that was scheduled on Saturday.

Besides Kokrajhar, voting will take place in Guwahati, Barpeta and Dhubri in the third phase on May 7.

The scrutiny for the remaining three seats was done on Saturday and altogether 37 nominations were found to be valid.

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Sarania, the chief of the Gana Suraksha Party (GSP) who has been representing the constituency as an Independent since 2014, had filed a writ petition in the Gauhati High Court challenging the striking down of his ST (Plains) status by the State-Level Scrutiny Committee, but it was dismissed on Thursday.

Following this, the MP filed the nomination as a member of the Rava community by submitting a certificate from the All Assam Tribal Sangha, issued on November 18, 1986.

“…the community field ‘Boro’ has been struck off and ‘Rava’ has been entered without any corresponding countersignature of issuing authority,” the returning officer said in his order.

Observing that the certificate looked “extremely doubtful”, Dwivedi said it raised “grave apprehensions” about its genuineness.

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The order also noted that Sarania had won the 2019 Lok Sabha elections from the Kokrajhar seat producing a certificate of the Boro-Kachari community that was struck down by the State-Level Scrutiny Committee recently.

“A person cannot belong to two different communities and cannot hold two ST certificates of different communities,” it added. (PTI)

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