LOCAL BODY EXPANSION: ELECTION COMMISSION TO HOLD MEET
Monday, 12 March 2018 | PNS | Dehradun-
The State Election Commission has convened a meeting of its top officials on Monday to discuss the situation arising out of cancellation of Government order on extension of limits of urban local bodies by Uttarakhand High Court.
The State Election Commissioner, Subardhan told The Pioneer that a meeting of the commission to discuss the HC order would be held on Monday. He said that the copy of the HC order would be studied in the meeting.
The State election commissioner, however, said that the Commission is ready to conduct free and fair elections on time.
He added that the State administration would take required steps as directed by the HC as it would issue re -notification on extension of limits of local bodies and invite objections from the general people.
In wake of the HC order, the speculation is rife that the State Government has no choice but to hold elections in two phases.
The State Government spokesperson and Cabinet minister Madan Kaushik, however, scotched such speculations and clearly said that elections weill be held on the stipulated time.
He added that the State election would decide the election schedule.
The elections will be held in 88 out of total 92 urban local bodies across Uttarakhand as the issue of Bhatrojkhan municipality in Almora district is pending in the court while Badrinath, Kedarnath and Gangotri do not have elected boards.
The State Government recently completed the process of extension of 41 bodies by amalgamating peripheral villages in them. People from 22 local bodies challenged delimitation in the HC.
In its order on Friday, the HC directed the State Government to issue another notification within 48 hours. It also gave the State Government a week’s time to seek objections from petitioners on its plan to merge villages in the municipal areas.
It is worth mentioning here that the State Government notification regarding delimitation of the urban local bodies had been challenged in the High Court by a number of people and some organisations. These petitioners stated that the Government did not give them a hearing before bringing their areas under the purview of municipal bodies.
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