The Madhya Pradesh High Court last week dismissed a plea challenging Bharatiya Janata Party leader Pragya Thakur’s election from Bhopal in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, PTI reported on Monday.

The petition, filed by Bhopal resident Rakesh Dixit, had alleged that Thakur had made communal speeches and incited religious sentiments to win the election, which violates Section 123 of the Representation of the People Act.

However, on December 12, the High Court had to reject the plea after the petitioner and his counsel failed to appear, reported the news agency.

Thakur is also one of the six persons facing trial in the 2008 Malegaon blasts case.

Six persons were killed and 100 injured when an explosive device strapped to a two-wheeler went off near a mosque in north Maharashtra’s Malegaon on September 29, 2008. Hindutva outfit Abhinav Bharat is suspected of carrying out the attack.

A single bench of Madhya Pradesh High Court cited two previous cases in which the issued raised in the application had been settled.

“In view of aforesaid, since the petitioner is not appearing despite repeated opportunities being granted to him, therefore, the election petition is dismissed for want of prosecution,” Justice Vishal Dhagat said, reported PTI.

“None appeared for the petitioner on 11.10.2022, 23.11.2022 and on 29.11.2022. Despite the circular of cause list and knowledge of listing, counsel for the petitioner is not appearing in the case. Repeated opportunities were granted to the petitioner to argue the case on preliminary issue,”