The Madhya Pradesh High Court on Tuesday stayed the suspension of a professor of Vikram University in Ujjain who had, before the Lok Sabha election results, predicted at least 300 seats for the Bharatiya Janata Party and over 300 seats for the National Democratic Alliance, The Times of India reported.
Professor Dr Raju Musalgaonkar was suspended on May 8 for violating the Election Commission’s Model Code of Conduct by sharing a prediction of the results on social media.
The Indore bench of the High Court issued notices to the higher education department, the registrar of the university, the chief electoral officer in Madhya Pradesh and Ujjain district returning officer.
On April 29, Musalgaonkar, the head of Sanskrit-Ved-Jyotirvigyan department, had posted: “BJP 300 ke paas and NDA 300 ke paar [BJP around 300 (seats) and NDA more than 300]”. A Congress worker had registered a complaint against the professor alleging the prediction was meant to influence polling.
Musalgaonkar claimed he had deleted the post immediately and that he did not support any particular party, The Indian Express reported. Musalgaonkar’s counsel argued that the professor was not a government servant and was not given any charge of elections, thus had not violated the poll code.