Assembly urges SEC to defer civic elections

The Legislative Assembly on Tuesday unanimously adopted a resolution urging the State Election Commission (SEC) to defer initiating the process of conducting elections to various urban local bodies (ULBs) and hold the same at a later date after fixing reservation of wards based on the 2011 Census data.

The resolution moved by Independent member Goolihatti D Shekar stated that injustice would be meted out to SCs/STs/OBCs if reservation of wards was fixed based on 2001 data.

Besides, the State Government had brought in amendments to various Acts during the last few years paving way for 50 per cent reservation for women in panchayats and ULBs.
Municipal Administration Minister Balachandra Jarkiholi said a copy of the resolution would be sent to the SEC.

The Supreme Court, last week, cleared the decks for holding immediate elections to ULBs, refusing to direct the SEC to defer the polls till the 2011 Census figures are published. The apex court had also directed the State Government to furnish the final list of ward reservations to the SEC by February 4. The government has subsequently filed a review petition before the apex court seeking two week’s time.

Earlier, participating in the discussions, D K Shivakumar (Cong) said Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar should take up the matter in the interest of social justice and not worry about contempt of court proceedings.

“If elections are held now, SCs/STs/OBCs will not get seats based on their population. Besides, women will get only 33 per cent reservation. The government should stand firm in this matter. If the chief minister is sent to jail (for contempt of court) we will also join him,” Shivakumar said.

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