Civic polls: SEC seeks three months time

By NT Bureau Published on Aug 06, 2018 01:30 PM IST

Chennai: The State Election Commission today said the process of delimitation of wards is not over yet and is expected to be completed by 15 August.

It said the final list will be handed over to the government on 31 August and if it is approved, the local body elections can be conducted in the next three months.

The SEC submitted its reply in the Madras High Court today as the HC on 31 July said that it would initiate the contempt of court proceedings if it does not submit the schedule and time frame within which the civic polls will be held in the State.

During the hearing on that day, Chief Justice Indira Banerjee raised several questions to the SEC's counsel Nedunchezhiyan.

“Has the Supreme Court given stay order preventing the election from being held? If so where is the copy of the verdict? What is the current status of the case that is happening in the apex court?”, she asked. Replying to this, Nedunchezhiyan said the delimitation work was going on.

DMK counsel P Wilson said since the local body election had not been conducted, funds of Rs 4,000 crore was not received by the State government from the Centre.

Indira Banerjee further questioned about the steps taken by the SEC taken to conduct the local body election. “Why no action is taken even after filing contempt of court,”she asked.

When the case was taken up for hearing again, Nedunchezhiyan said the schedule of the election will be announced after the delimitation work is done.

In response to this, Chief Justice said the hearing will be postponed to Monday (today), and if the schedule is not announced on that day then the contempt of court will be initiated on State Election Commissioner and Secretary.

During the previous hearing Wilson asked the court to punish the officials who are responsible for not conducting the election.

He also pointed out that the Supreme Court has not issued any stay order to conduct elections in the delimitation issue.

SPEAKER COMPLETES, CM BEGINS

Hearing of the case regarding the disqualification of the 18 MLAs resumed for the third day in the High Court today during which Speaker P Dhanapal's side arguments got over. Senior advocate Aryama Sundaram who appeared on behalf of Dhanapal said no rules were violated in disqualifying the MLAs. “They were given ample time to explain their stand only after which the action was taken,” he argued.

Following this senior advocate C S Vaidhyanathan appeared on behalf of Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami and began his argument.