HC refuses to restrain Sachin oath as RS member

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Wednesday refused to restrain Indian cricketer Sachin Tendulkar from taking oath as a Rajya Sabha member on a PIL seeking quashing of his nomination to the Upper House.

The court, however, asked the Centre to respond to the PIL by July 4, the next date of hearing.

A bench of Acting Chief Justice A K Sikri and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw dismissed the application for stay of Sachin`s oath ceremony, but asked Additional Solicitor General (ASG) A S Chandhiok to seek instructions from the government and inform the court by the next date of hearing on the PIL.

"How is this sports category covered while nominating a sportsperson to the Rajya Sabha?" the bench queried and asked the ASG to reply on this issue.

Chandhiok argued that the power has been exercised by the President of India and the court cannot interfere in the matter.

The petitioner Ram Gopal Singh Sisodia, a former Delhi MLA, had challenged the nomination on the ground that Sachin does not possess any of the qualifications prescribed under Article 80 of the Constitution for being nominated to the Rajya Sabha.

Appearing for the petitioner, advocate R K Kapoor submitted that the Constitution allowed the government to select from only four categories – arts, science, literature and social science. The selection of a sportsperson was unconstitutional, he said.

On May 14, the Supreme Court had refused to quash 39-year-old batting maestro`s nomination to the Upper House and had asked Sisodia to rather approach the high court with his plea.