Sangma be given scrutiny proceedings, order

New Delhi: The Election Commission today asked the Returning Officer for the Presidential poll to provide details of the scrutiny proceedings and the order on rejection of opposition candidate P A Sangma`s objection to UPA nominee Pranab Mukherjee`s candidature.

Returning Officer V K Agnihotri, who is the Secretary General of Rajya Sabha, had sought a clarification from the Commission on whether he could provide details of the scrutiny proceedings and his order to Sangma. "The EC has asked the Returning Officer to provide all scrutiny proceedings and order passed by it on the Presidential election, on demand by a candidate," top sources in the Commission told PTI.

Sangma, who is supported by BJP, BJD and AIADMK, had sought cancellation of Mukherjee`s nomination under the Office of Profit rules on the ground that he was Chairman of the Indian Statistical Institute (ISI), a charge rejected by the UPA candidate. Turning down the objection, the Returning Officer had yesterday cleared Mukherjee`s candidature while accepting his nomination papers.

In his complaint, Sangma`s lawyer Satya Pal Jain had demanded that Mukherjee`s papers be cancelled at the scrutiny stage as he held an office of profit. Jain had said that Mukherjee was the Chairperson of ISI and, hence, could not contest the Presidential poll under the Office of Profit rules.

BJP has termed as "fabricated" the resignation letter of Mukherjee from ISI and said it had all options open before it, including legal, and would decide on the matter soon. Sangma today held a two-hour meeting with Leader of Opposition Sushma Swaraj and some other BJP leaders at her residence to chalk out a strategy on the issue.