SC to hear DMK's plea on Tamil Nadu local body polls on 11 December; party has sought implementation of quotas for women, SC, ST candidates

  • SC will hear on Wednesday a fresh plea of DMK seeking quashing of the new notification for local bodies' election in Tamil Nadu

  • It alleged that it did not provide quota for women and SC and ST candidates as per the 2011 census

  • Plea has sought compliance of legal requirements, including under 'Rule 6 of the Tamil Nadu Panchayats Rules'

New Delhi: The Supreme Court will hear on Wednesday a fresh plea of DMK seeking quashing of the new notification for local bodies' election in Tamil Nadu alleging that it did not provide quota for women and SC and ST candidates as per the 2011 census.

A bench headed by chief justice SA Bobde took note of the submission of senior advocate AM Singhvi, appearing for Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), that the 7 December notification issued by the Tamil Nadu State Election Commission (TNSEC) does not comply with the Tamil Nadu Panchayats (Reservation of seats and Rotation of Reserved Seats) Rules, 1995.

 SC to hear DMKs plea on Tamil Nadu local body polls on 11 December; party has sought implementation of quotas for women, SC, ST candidates

File image of the Supreme Court of India. Reuters

"We will hear it on Wednesday (11 December)," said the bench which also comprised Justices B R Gavai and Surya Kant. The top court, on 6 December, had put on hold the elections for the local bodies in nine new districts, carved out of four existing ones, in the state for complying with legal formalities such as delimitation and reservation in four months.

It had said however that TNSEC could proceed with the elections to all panchayats at the village, intermediate and district levels in the remaining 31 revenue districts of the southern state. DMK, in its fresh plea filed through lawyer Amit Nand Tiwari, has sought a direction to the state government and the poll panel to quash the election notification issued on 7 December.

The plea has sought compliance of legal requirements, including under "Rule 6 of the Tamil Nadu Panchayats (Reservation of Seats and Rotation of Reserved Seats) Rules" on providing quota to women and SC and ST candidates based on 2011 census before issuing a fresh notification for local bodies polls in the state.

It alleged that the state poll panel has violated the apex court's 6 December order which said that while conducting elections, "the respondents shall provide proportionate reservation at all levels, in accordance with the Rule 6" of the Panchayat rules.

The plea said that poll panel has decided to follow the 2016 notification for reservation for the upcoming local bodies elections. "It is most humbly submitted here that the 2016 notification for reservation of seats is based on the census of 1991 and cannot be used in view of the subsequent Delimitation Act 2017 and the constitution of Delimitation commission to carry out the reservation in local bodies.

"Thus, using the 2016 reservations for local bodies in the present elections, despite alleged fresh delimitation based on a census of 2011 is on the face of it illegal and the impugned notification deserves to be set aside," the plea said.

It said the fresh delimitation has altered boundaries and composition of wards and hence, the earlier reservation notification of 2016 cannot be the basis for conducting current elections. "The wards, boundaries, populations in the state of Tamil Nadu have been changed and providing reservation, as per the 2016 notification, is on the face of it illegal and the impugned notification deserves to be set aside," it said.

Earlier, the top court decided to put on hold the elections for the local bodies in nine new districts, carved out of four existing ones, in Tamil Nadu on the plea of the DMK. DMK, the main opposition party, had sought a direction to the state authorities to "carry out delimitation, reservation and rotation process and fulfill all other legal requirements, before issuing any election notifications and conducting elections" for the local bodies in the state.

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Updated Date: Dec 09, 2019 18:29:34 IST