LEGAL

Cal HC wants SEC to defer Bengal civic polls
January 15, 2022

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Source: Inhouse illustration

One-liner: The Calcutta HC has asked the State Election Commission (SEC) to explore the possibility of postponing the civic polls to four municipal corporations by four to six weeks in view of a surge in Covid cases in West Bengal.

Need to know: In an order dated Jan 13, 2022, a division bench also directed the SEC to take a decision within 48 hours.

Surge in Covid cases: In response to a PIL, the bench observed that the SEC has to keep in mind the surge in Covid cases in the state, adding that there has been a massive spread in places like Chandannagar town and North 24 Parganas dt.

  • Earlier, the SEC had announced that elections to the Bidhannagar, Chandannagar, Siliguri and Asansol municipal corporations will be held on Jan 22. Bidhannagar falls in North 24 Parganas district

Looking forward: The court also observed that the SEC should also consider whether it is possible to hold free and fair polls in a peaceful manner in such a situation.

Bottom line: It said that the SEC has enough powers to decide on postponing the polls and the need to consult with any other body in this regard. 

Source: PTI