Chandigarh: Jailed former Punjab Cabinet minister Jagir Kaur can vote in the forthcoming Presidential election as she is still a member of the Punjab Assembly representing the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), the Election Commission on Tuesday said.
The EC issued a clarification in this regard saying Kaur was a sitting MLA in the Punjab Assembly on March 30, 2012, when she was convicted by a Sessions Court at Patiala in Punjab and taken into judicial custody with three other accused following their conviction in the case relating to her daughter`s mysterious death 12 years back.
An EC spokesman said, "she has appealed against the said conviction in the Punjab and Haryana High Court, which has not yet been disposed of by the said court, the saving clause of above mentioned section is attracted in her case and she is not disqualified yet and continues to be a Member of Legislative Assembly of Punjab".
The Election Commission said that she is thus entitled to vote in ensuing Presidential election.
He further clarified that if she is confined in a prison because of her above conviction, she can vote only in person, at the polling station and not by postal ballot. For this purpose she would have to seek and obtain permission on her own from the competent court.
She was, however, acquitted of the charge of murdering her daughter Harpeet Kaur and is presently lodged in the Modern Jail at Kapurthala.
Kaur, a former President of Shiromani Gurdwara Prabhandak Committee (SGPC), was awarded five years imprisonment and also fined Rs 5,000 for conspiracy read with charges relating to kidnapping, forcible abortion and wrongful confinement.
With Kaur, three others Dalwinder Kaur Dhesi, Paramjit Singh Raipur and Nishan Singh were convicted under section 120-B (Criminal Conspiracy). The three were also fined Rs 5,000 each.