The Sendai High Court ruled Tuesday that the disparity of up to more than threefold in July's Upper House election was unconstitutional, but stopped short of nullifying the poll results in five northeastern constituencies as sought by plaintiffs.

The ruling is the eighth to be handed down among 16 lawsuits filed across the country at 14 high courts and their branches by groups of lawyers, claiming the vote weight disparity in the House of Councilors race violated the Constitution's requirement for fair elections.

It is the first time that a court ruled the vote disparity in an Upper House election unconstitutional since the country merged two pairs of less-populated prefectures into two constituencies to reduce the gap in the value of votes in 2015.