Local body elections to be decided this week

Published on: 24 Aug, 2015
Published under: Politics News Kerala

The State Election Commission (SEC) will take a decision on the conduct of local government elections this week, but after hearing out the government at what is easily a crucial meeting with Chief Minister Oommen Chandy and his Cabinet colleagues here on Monday evening.

The government wants the local government elections to be conducted in two stages, holding elections to the municipalities and corporations in the first stage and to the panchayats in the second stage. This would be possible only if the State Election Commission agrees to hold the polls in two stages and at this point of time, that looks a remote possibility. The government is also aware of the implications of the two stage elections. It would bring the entire administration to a stand still beyond November and, perhaps, up to December and that can have a debilitating effect on the government, which has the more challenging target in the Assembly elections due early next year.

The difficulty that the government faces is that the Congress and the Indian Union Muslim League (IUML) have not still not agreed on the best course. By all available indications, the Congress is reconciled to simultaneous elections to all local government institutions, based on the 2010 delimitation of wards, but the IUML is not.

Election Commission sources point out that comparisons with earlier occasions when elections were held in stages were irrelevant in the present situation because unlike in the past, the government had gone in for formation of several new urban local bodies, which would affect the size and shape of scores of panchayats as they existed earlier.

Top sources in the SEC toldThe Hinduon Sunday that the Commission would listen to the government position with an open mind, but its primary commitment would be to the Constitutional mandate to hold the elections on time and the directives of the Kerala High Court on a batch of petitions relating to formation of new panchayats and municipalities.

src – : http://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Thiruvananthapuram/fate-of-local-body-elections-to-be-decided-this-week/article7573932.ece?ref=tpnews#comments

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