UP Panchayat Polls- “Consider 2015 And Not 1995 As ‘Base Year’ For Reserving Seats, Hold Elections By May 25”: Allahabad High Court

first_imgNews UpdatesUP Panchayat Polls- “Consider 2015 And Not 1995 As ‘Base Year’ For Reserving Seats, Hold Elections By May 25”: Allahabad High Court Sparsh Upadhyay15 March 2021 8:17 PMShare This – xIt is clear that the provisions of the impugned Government Order dated 11th February 2021 would have the effect of exceeding the prescribed vertical limit of reservation of 50 percent, which cannot be permitted: Allahabad HCThe Allahabad High Court on Monday (15th March) quashed an order issued by the Uttar Pradesh government (dated 11th February) dealing with the reservation of seats (for various categories of candidates) for the upcoming panchayat polls, taking 1995 as the base year. The State Government submitted before the bench of Justice Manish Mathur and Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi that it had…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginThe Allahabad High Court on Monday (15th March) quashed an order issued by the Uttar Pradesh government (dated 11th February) dealing with the reservation of seats (for various categories of candidates) for the upcoming panchayat polls, taking 1995 as the base year. The State Government submitted before the bench of Justice Manish Mathur and Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi that it had no objection to implement the reservation and allotment of seats of constituencies in Panchayat’s elections taking 2015 as the base year.Earlier, on 12th March, the High Court had stayed the publication of the final list of seats reserved for the panchayat polls till 15th March. Background of the matter The High Court was dealing with a public interest litigation (PIL) filed by one Ajay Kumar, who challenged the UP-State Government’s decision to take 1995 as the base year, instead of 2015, for reserving the seats for upcoming panchayat polls. It may be noted that provisions for reservations in the Panchayat Elections are to be determined as per the Uttar Pradesh Panchayat Raj (Reservation and Allotment of Seats and Offices) Rules, 1994 with Rule 4 providing allotment of seats for reservation on a rotational basis. Referring to the Government Order dated 16th September 2015, the Petitioner’s counsel contended that substantial demographic changes have taken place in the Districts of the State in the Gram Panchayat and Kshetra Panchayat territories in view of the census of 2001 and 2011. Thus, it was argued that it wouldn’t be conducive to have 1995 as the base year for purposes of applying reservation as per Rule 4 of Rules of 1994 and that the base year in view of the changed demographic situation was required to be taken as 2015. The Court was also apprised about the fact that vide impugned order (dated 11th February 2021), the UP Government reserved the seats in terms of Rule 4 of Rules of 1994 by taking 1995 as the base year instead of 2015. Lastly, it was submitted that the provisions for reservation as contemplated by the impugned Government Order (dated 11th February) would result in more than 60 percent of seats in a district being reserved. Thus, it was stated that it would be violative of various judgments of the Apex Court and that it would also violate the maximum cap fixed with respect to reservation of Backward Class of 27 per cent. Court’s order Taking into account Apex Court’s Judgment in the case of Vikas Kishanrao Gawali vs. State of Maharashtra and others LL 2021 SC 132, the Court observed, “It is clear that the provisions of the impugned Government Order dated 11th February 2021 would have the effect of exceeding the prescribed vertical limit of reservation of 50 percent, which cannot be permitted.” In Vikas Kishanrao (supra) matter, the Supreme Court has recently read down Section 12(2)(c) of the Maharashtra Zilla Parishads and Panchayat Samitis Act, 1961 which provides reservation of 27 per cent of seats in the Zilla Parishads and Panchayat Samitis. “Reservation in favour of OBCs in the concerned local bodies can be notified to the extent that it does not exceed an aggregate of 50 percent of the total seats reserved in favor of SCs/STs/OBCs taken together.”, the bench comprising Justices AM Khanwilkar, Indu Malhotra and Ajay Rastogi observed. The Advocate General too, submitted before the HC that the State Government had no objection to implementing the reservation and allotment of seats of constituencies in Panchayats elections taking 2015 as the base year. Further, taking into account the fact that the entire exercise for providing reservation in the Panchayat Elections would have to done a fresh taking 2015 as the base year, the Court directed the Government to to complete the entire exercise by 27th March 2021. The Court has directed to hold the elections by 10th May 2021 and indirect election by 25th May 2021. Lastly, considering the submissions of the Advocate General, the impugned order dated 11th February 2021 was quashed and the writ petition was allowed. Case title – Ajay Kumar v. State Of U.P. Thru. Addl. Chief Secy. Panchayat Raj, Lko. & Ors. [P.I.L. CIVIL No. – 6929 of 2021] Click Here To Download OrderRead OrderNext Storylast_img read more