TN local body polls: Madras HC adjourns hearing to July 14

Chennai
6 Jul 2017

The Madras High Court today adjourned till July 14 all petitions and appeals filed in connection with local body elections in Tamil Nadu as an SLP in this connection is scheduled to come up in the Supreme Court on July 12. The first bench comprising Chief Justice Indira Banerjee and Justice M Sundar, before which the petition filed by one A Narayanan of NGO Change of India came up, adjourned the case after hearing submissions by Advocate General Muthukumaraswamy and the counsel of DMK, which has filed an SLP in the apex court, challenging constitutional validity of extending tenure of special officers. The NGO had in its petition challenged the extension of tenure of special officers for local bodies. The Advocate General submitted that the SLP with regard to conduct of the elections filed by DMK is scheduled to come up in the SC on July 12, to which senior advocate P Wilson, appearing on behalf of DMK, said there was no bar on the High Court in hearing cases before it in the above connection. Senior counsel B Kumar, who appeared on behalf of State Election Commission, on his part submitted that as per the order passed by the single judge amendments have to be brought by the state government to prevent the candidates with criminal background from contesting elections and with regard to reservation for SC and ST communities in local bodies. Without all these amendments if the elections were announced again another round of litigations would follow, for which the bench said the court would be slow in entertaining such petitions. The bench also allowed an impleading petition filed by advocate M Palanimuthu for a direction to the government to finalise a decision with regard to reserving posts of deputy mayors to village panchayat vice presidents and providing adequate representation/ reservation in all local body standing committees to SC/STs or women before announcement of elections.(PTI)