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रविवार, दिसंबर 02, 2012

Former Punjab minister Avtar Henry’s vote to be cancelled

CHANDIGARH/JALANDHAR: The process of cancellation of voting rights of senior Punjab Congress leader and former minister Avtar Henry has been set in motion with the submission of form (7) with the Election Registration Officer at Jalandhar.
Sources in the state Election Commission in Chandigarh said on Saturday that a decision on the cancellation of voting rights would be taken shortly after all documents and legal aspects had been properly scrutinized. An officer, not wishing to be identified, said, "We will scrutinize all documents and a decision is expected to be reached with a week to 10 days' time."
Born in Kakkarkalan village of Jalandhar, Henry, now 66, had gone to London in 1960 with his brother and started a career as a taxi driver. He adopted the name Henry and it was in the UK that he married Surinder Kaur, who hails from Shankar village in Jalandhar. He acquired British citizenship in 1968 and returned to India the following year.
Henry contested the state assembly elections on a Congress ticket in 1986, losing by just 1200 votes. He went on to win three straight elections — 1992, 1997 and 2002 — from Jalandhar (North) and served asminister for excise and taxation, industry, and food and supplies.

It was Henry’s son, Gurjit Singh, who accused his father of possessing two passports and said he had acquired an earlier one under a false identity. Singh had complained to union home ministry’s foreignersdivision that his father holds a British passport, yet was able to contest assembly elections for the last two decades even though he was not eligible to contest them.

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