SC rejects Saritha's plea challenging Rahul Gandhi's Wayanad win, slaps Rs 1 lakh fine

SC rejects Saritha's plea challenging Rahul Gandhi's Wayanad win, imposes Rs 1 lakh fine
Rahul Gandhi, Saritha Nair

The Supreme Court on Monday dismissed the petition filed by Saritha S Nair, an accused in the solar scam, challenging the election victory of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi from Wayanad Lok Sabha constituency. The apex court also imposed a fine of Rs 1 lakh on Saritha.

Saritha, in her petition, sought to cancel Gandhi's win and questioned the rejection of her nomination papers. Saritha contested and failed against Gandhi from Amethi constituency in the Lok Sabha polls held in 2019.

Saritha had also submitted nominations to the Wayanad and Ernakulam constituencies but were rejected by the respective Returning Officers on grounds that she was sentenced to three years each in two cheating cases by magistrate courts.

The solar scam had rocked the then UDF government headed by Oommen Chandy in Kerala after reports surfaced in June, 2013 that some of his staff were involved in alleged cheating of several persons of crores of rupees by Saritha and her husband by offering solar panel solutions.

A judicial commission, set up by the UDF government to probe the allegations, in its report submitted in 2017 during the LDF rule had found that Chandy and four of his personal staff had "assisted" Saritha and her company, Team Solar, in enabling them to cheat their customers. Chandy had then hit out at the Judicial Commission, alleging it was "prejudiced".

Saritha had accused several high-profile leaders of molestation and rape.

Saritha also had 28 criminal cases registered against her at various places in Kerala.

The infamous solar scam eventually led to the UDF government being voted out of power during the 2016 assembly elections.

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