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Interference by courts in election process should be to facilitate it’s completion and not to postpone it: Bombay HC

Socio Legal Corp


Anant Baburao Golait v. The State Election Commission of Maharashtra

Several petitions were filed challenging the notification which was about ward formations for Maharashtra local body elections and prayed to set it aside. The court held that it cannot stall elections to local bodies just because certain disgruntled voices are raised against them.

The Bombay HC referred to SC precedent in which CJ Dipankar Datta and CJ RV Ghuge had clearly stated that the court would interfere only for progress and election process and not for postponing the same.

Advocate Devdatt P Palodkar appearing for the petitioner argued that since the election process has not yet started so the orders passed by several Collectors of districts matter pertaining to delimitation or allotment of election seats, preparing for electoral rolls can be amenable and the court must hear the writ petition thereon as per Art. 226 & 243-ZG of Indian Constitution.

The Bombay HC refused to hear the same on 3 grounds:

  1. The petitioner has remedy u/s 21 of the Maharashtra Municipal Councils, Nagar Panchayats and Industrial Townships Act.
  2. Since HC abided by SC it imposed limitations on its own power to act under A. 226 and refused to pass orders which would indirectly postpone the election.
  3. In Suresh Mahajan v. The State of MP & Anr. SC held that the elections are under obligation of the State Election Commission and it must not be delayed.

The Court denied interfering in the election process, therefore the case was dismissed.

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