The Madras high court today cancelled the local body elections in Tamil Nadu. It asked the SEC to issue fresh notification and hold the elections before December 30.
An order in this regard was passed based on a DMK petition. ‘Even in Chennai Corporation, not a single seat out of 200 wards allotted for ST’, said the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK), the principal Opposition party in the Legislative Assembly, and moved the Madras High Court seeking to quash the reservation of wards and posts for civic bodies announced by the State. and instead provide adequate reservation for Scheduled Tribes as mandated by the Constitution.
The writ petition filed by the party’s organisation secretary R.S. Bharathi was taken up before Justice N. Kirubakaran. During the hearing, senior counsel for the petitioner submitted that the State government has failed to provide due reservation
In an earlier petition, DMK said there had been a great hurry in notifying the elections.
However, the advocate general furnished civic poll notification details for the year 2006 and 2011, prompting the court to comment: “Even in 2011, the notification was issued on September 21, and filing of nomination was started from the very next day. This is a pattern followed by all the ruling governments. I was of the opinion that the government was in a rush, now the submissions give a different picture.”
The court then questioned the petitioner as to what steps the party had taken so far, being a responsible opposition for the conduct of fair and free election, apart from approaching the court at the last minute.
To this, DMK’s senior counsel said, “We gave notice to the State Election Commission on the issue before six months.