Seek clarification on reservation list for Palike polls: High Court

Seek clarification on reservation list for Palike polls: High Court

The Karnataka High Court on Friday directed the State government to seek clarification on the reservation list announced by it as per the 2001 census for the elections to the Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike.

Disposing of a petition filed by the Karnataka State Commission for Scheduled Caste (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST) challenging the reservation list, Justice Raghavendra S Chauhan directed the government to seek clarification with the single bench which had directed it to conduct the elections with the existing delimitation of wards and reservation list.

In the order, the bench said there was an apparent contradiction with respect to the constitutional provision regarding the reservation list and delimitation of wards and the judgement of the court. The government, therefore, needs to seek clarification for any modification of the same, it said.

Supreme Court senior counsel Gopal Subramanium, appearing for the SC/ST Commission, contended that the reservation list announced by the government had not been done in accordance with the 2011 census, which was published in 2013. The senior counsel said the government had not announced the reservation list in the interest of the community, as there was a 48 per cent difference in terms of the population percentage of SC/ST.

The reservation list was announced keeping the population count as per the 2001 census and not the 2011 census. He said the list was not in the interest Article 234 T of the Indian Constitution, which talks about reservation for SC/ST in the municipal elections.

Additional Advocate General A S Ponnanna submitted that the deputy commissioner had already submitted the draft on the delimitation of wards as per the 2011 census and it had been forwarded to the Urban Development Department. Due to the pending litigation and the single bench order, the government had not yet notified it, he said. During the hearing, the bench observed why the High Court should provide instructions to the State government to conduct the BBMP elections and why the government was not able to take a decision on its own.

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