Supreme Court defers hearing Centre's plea against order staying election process in OBC seats of Madhya Pradesh civic polls

  • Gautam Mishra
  • 02:57 PM, 03 Jan 2022

The Supreme Court on Monday deferred hearing in the Centre's plea challenging order of this court dated December 17, 2021, by which it had stayed the election process in the seats reserved for Other Backward Classes (OBCs) in the local body elections in Madhya Pradesh.

A division bench of Justice AM Khanwilkar and Justice CT Ravikumar said that this will be taken up on January 17, 2022, along with the other connected matters.

The present plea sought for recall/modification of the Supreme Court’s impungned order with the following prayers:

  • Prohibiting local body elections for a period of four months with a mandate to the State Government to come out with Commission's report and directing the State Election Commission to hold the elections as per the reports.
  • As an interim measure, suspending the process of elections and has further impleadment in the matter.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta submitted that "We have complied with the judgment of the Supreme Court in the case of K. Krishnamurthy case and Vikas Kishanrao Gavli and have also moved an application for some relief, I hope that is listed."

The Centre averred in its plea that the up-liftment of Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes has been the utmost priority of the Union Government and any inadequate representation of OBCs in local self-government would defeat the very object, intent and purpose of the very idea of the de-centralization of power and taking governance to the grass root level.

“…it is imperative that the Union of India is impleaded as a Respondent in the instant Petition, so that necessary assistance may be given to this Hon’ble Court on the larger issue of implementation of OBC reservation in all the local body elections in the Country,” stated the plea.

Previously, the division bench of Justices AM Khanwilkar and CT Ravikumar in their order passed on 17th December along with staying the elections for OBC had also directed the Election Commission to re-notify the seats for general category.

The Bench had further observed that the election for General Category seats would proceed along with other elections already notified but directed for declaring the results of all the seats (including re-notified General seats) together on the same day.

"In other words, the dispensation directed in respect of Maharashtra Cases would apply proprio vigore to the State of Madhya Pradesh as well, in respect of all the local bodies making no distinction between urban and rural local bodies”.

Case Title: Rahul Ramesh Wagh Vs. The State of Maharashtra and Ors. and Connected matter Manmohan Nagar v Madhya Pradesh State Election Commission