In a research done by a popular new portal, it was found that 194 politicians of the Nation including 6 former CMs and 10 cabinet rank ministers provided wrong PAN information to the election commission. In the list 3 names were found from Himachal Pradesh also. Namely from the hill state were former CM Virbhadra Singh, Former CM Prem Kumar Dhumal and minister for food and Civil supplies Kishan Kapoor.
As per Representation of people act 1951 Section 125(A)(3), providing wrong information about PAN number could result in cancellation of Lok sabha/Vidhan Sabha membership. As per the law before contesting election a candidate has to provide details of financials and criminal cases through an affidavit to the Election commission.
The details of Himachal Pradesh based politicians who submitted wrong information is as below:
- Former CM and BJP top leader PremKumar Dhumal provided wrong information to the EC. In 2007 Vidhan Sabha election in his affidavit his PAN number was quoted as AAKTD99648, whereas after five years in 2012 it was quoted as AAKPD9964E.
- Similarly five times BJP MLA and four time minister Kishan Kapoor. In 2007 he quoted his PAN as AFYPK8382G, whereas in 2012 it was quoted as AFUPK8382G. Currently Kishan kappoor is facing more than 9 criminal cases u/s 171E, 365, 147, 149, 342, 120B, 506, 34 and 341 of the IPC.
- Even senior congress leader and six time chief minister has figured on this list. In 2007 Virbhadra quoted his PAN to be ALPRS6513N, whereas after five years he quoted his PAN to be ALRPS6513N. Singh currently is facing charges of money laundering by Enforcement directorate in matter concerning 7 cr.
Nowhere in the report do we claim that the PAN information was quoted wrong deliberately. However the way these Pan numbers have been quoted in the two consecutive election affidavit, seems the move could been done to conceal information about number of criminal cases and increase in worth perhaps.
Surprisingly this information was never evaluated even by the election commission in these years. This also proves that that the Election Commission of India (ECI) though is getting paperwork completed by candidates before elections, but is not verifying whether the paper submitted is correct or not. The website (Cobra post) which unearthed this information collated data from the ECI website.
As per section 139A of the IT act, if a person has been allotted PAN number once, it cannot be changed even after correction of any mistakes. Moreover if some deliberately provides wrong PAN information, is liable for a fine of upto Rs 10000/-.
In a total of 194 leaders figured in this list published by the web portal are 6 former Chief Ministers, 10 are cabinet rank ministers, 54 curernt MLAs, 102 former MLAs, 1 former Deputy speaker, 1 former speaker, 1 formed MP, 1 deputy chief Minister. These leaders belong to 29 political parties like BJP, Congress, SP, BSP, JDU, NCP, etc.