BBMP polls reach Supreme Court again; State seeks more time

Even as the State Election Commission has announced the calendar of events for BBMP polls, the Karnataka State government has filed an appeal in the Supreme Court on Monday, against the High Court single bench judgment on BBMP election.

The State government in its petition has challenged the HC single bench judgment that directed the State to hold election before August 5th as per the Supreme Court’s previous order. Initiating a fresh round of litigation, the government has appealed the Supreme Court to put the election process on hold. It has sought time to conduct polls as per delimitation and reservation of wards to Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe candidates based on 2011 census.

Notice to original petitioners

Two BJP corporators C K Ramamurthy and B Somashekhar who had originally filed petition in the High Court questioning the delay in BBMP polls, received notice from the Supreme Court on Monday to appear before the court for hearing of the fresh case. C K Ramamurthy informed Citizen Matters that he and Somashekhar had filed a caveat in the Supreme Court last week soon after the High Court verdict on BBMP polls was out, which means the Supreme Court cannot issue a stay on elections without hearing the petitioners of the HC case.

“As the State government has been unwilling to conduct polls on time, we had expected the government to file an appeal in the Supreme Court questioning High Court verdict, hence we filed a caveat in the apex court the very next day. Today we received a notice from the SC to appear for hearing. The notice does not mention the date of hearing, but we expect the matter to come up for hearing on July 2nd or 3rd,” he said.

The State Election Commission which too was a respondent in the High Court case, did not file a caveat in the apex court. An official from SEC on the condition of anonymity said that they did not file caveat as they had already decided to conduct polls and declared the election schedule. The officer added that the SEC will continue with polling preparation till the new order from Supreme Court.

Karnataka State Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe Commission Chairman K Basavanna Chalvadi who was the main petitioner in the High Court seeking reservation based on 2011 census said that the Commission would implead in the appeal filed by the State government. “We are of the view that election should be held based on delimitation and reservation of 2011 population census. Hence, we will implead in the case,” he said.

CM’s meeting with Restructuring committee

In a meeting of the ministers and elected representatives chaired by the Chief Minister on June 25th, BBMP Restructuring Committee placed its recommendations on restructuring. According to a report in The Hindu, the Committee recommended to introduce a separate law to govern Bengaluru and to reorganise Bengaluru into five city corporations.

There was also a proposal of having a  Greater Bengaluru Authority headed by the Chief Minister. However, the meeting decided to take a final call on restructuring after B S Patil led Restructuring Committee and Select Committee of Legislature submit their reports.

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About Akshatha M 220 Articles
Akshatha M was a Staff Journalist at Citizen Matters. She tweets at @akshata1.