SC refuses to stay rural local body polls in Tamil Nadu

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Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edappadi K Palaniswami (file image

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister Edapaddi Palaniswamy has welcomed the verdict of the Supreme Court of India today, permitting the State Election Commission to hold the rural local body elections from December 27th-30th, 2019 throughout the state except in nine new districts that have been recently carved out.

A bench headed by the Chief Justice SA Bobde and also comprising Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant rejected the petition lodged by the Dravida Munetra Kazhagam (DMK), the opposition party in the state which sought postponement of the polls due to the delimitation exercise not being completed in those nine districts, apart from other formalities such as reservation of seats for the members of the SC/ST community etc.

The state government was willing to postpone the polls in the new districts and the bench readily agreed to this proposal while allowing the local body elections in other districts to go ahead.

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Previously the bench gave the state government two options, either to hold the bifurcation of districts in abeyance or not to hold the polls in the nine new districts.

The State Election Commission has been directed to carry out the delimitation process and other formalities before conducting polls in the remaining districts.

The Poll commission had on Monday through a notification announced the local body elections which are to be conducted in two phases on December 27th and 30th.

The ruling AIADMK had accused the opposition DMK of trying to delay the polls and said that they are scared of losing. The DMK has alleged that this will provide the ruling party an opportunity to indulge in poll related violence and other unfair electoral means.

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