SC directs State to hold civic polls

It tells govt to co-operate with election commission

The Supreme Court on Wednesday rejected a plea for postponing elections to urban local bodies in Karnataka.

It also directed the Karnataka government to extend full cooperation to the State Election Commission in conducting the polls as scheduled.

“Keeping in view the background facts and the orders passed by the High Court and this court, we consider it appropriate to direct the chief secretary of the Karnataka government and subordinate officials to extend full cooperation in the holding of elections,” a bench headed by Justice G S Singhvi said.

While dismissing the petition by the State government to postpone the elections, the court also directed its registry to intimate the Karnataka government about its order by Friday. 

“No official can make any attempt to frustrate the election process,” the bench said and allowed a PIL filed by the Dalit Sangharsh Samithi to be withdrawn.

Earlier, during the hearing, the court said it seemed that the Samithi was involved in “shadow boxing” as the petition did not allege anything against the State government.

“You do not find fault with the State government and rather you faulted the State Election Commission. Coming to the Supreme Court is not a joke.

It seems it is shadow boxing," the bench observed when the samithi sought permission to withdraw the PIL.

However, the bench allowed the withdrawal of the petition with a direction to the State government to extend cooperation to the poll panel in holding the elections for the urban local bodies consisting of town panchayats, city municipal councils, town municipal councils and city municipal corporations.

The apex court had dismissed another petition filed by Raju Chavan, a social activist, who pleaded that the elections be conducted on the basis of revised data on the State’s population and that the reservation list for the urban local bodies polls be prepared based on those figures.
DH News Service

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