Calcutta HC to hear state panchayat polls case today
Kolkata: The Calcutta High Court is expected to take up the problematic case of panchayat polls in Trinamool Congress-ruled West Bengal on Tuesday.
Today’s hearing in the case is crucial since both the Trinamool government and the state election commission have been at loggerheads over holding the polls for a long time now.
After the two sides failed to reach a consensus on the issue, the case ultimately went to the Calcutta High Court.
The West Bengal government has proposed May 5 and May 8 as the new dates for holding panchayat polls but the EC wants to conduct polls in 3 phases. The state government moved an application before the court of Justice Biswanath Somadder seeking a direction to the SEC that it notifies the dates announced by the government.
The SEC in a counter application stated that the state government's announcement of dates under section 42 of the West Bengal Panchayat Election Act was unilateral and against the provisions of the Constitution.
The Commission also prayed for speedy disposal of its petition for the sake of holding the panchayat poll in time.
The tenure of the elected panchayats in the state will end in early June. At present, the petition of the SEC is being held on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
The Commission had moved the high court seeking cancellation of dates - April 26 and April 30 - announced by the government earlier, claiming that it was unconstitutional. Even as the hearing in the SEC's petition was on, the state informed the court that it had decided on new dates for the panchayat elections.
With PTI inputs