Kochi, Oct 19 (UNI) The Kerala High Court today decided to proceed further with the petitions filed by former Cooperative Minister M V Raghavan and 261 others challenging the September 23, 2007 election to the managing committee of the Pariyaram Medical Cooperative Society.
Justice K M Joseph also extended the interim stay imposed by the court on September 24 on any fresh enrolments or appointments by the new committee.
Dismissing the newly-elected committee's contention that the high court had no jurisdiction to entertain a petition disputing a cooperative society election, Justice Joseph ruled the court had the power to entertain such a petition if there was violation of the principle of natural justice and fundamental rights.
He also observed a prima facie viewing of the video of the polling showed the petitioners' claim about bogus voting was correct.
The court also observed that ''at the heart of any democratic society institution lies the indispensable that those who govern are elected in a manner which is both fair and transparent.'' ''The concept of a fair election is inextricably intermixed with the central theme of accountablity of those who govern to those who are governed.'' The judge added ''in the course of my viewing of the video, I found that indeed there were persons in the queue, which was formed in the early hours, who appeared to be impersonators.'' The case has been posted to November 12 for further hearing.