High Court order clears decks for mayoral polls

2:45 PM, Wednesday, February 26th, 2014

High-CourtMangalore: Decks have been cleared for conducting the Mayoral election here following an interim order by a Division Bench of the Karnataka High Court on Monday.

While giving liberty to the government to conduct the elections, the High Court directed the government to reserve the post of Mayor to a general category candidate (Councillor) while that of Deputy Mayor to a general category woman candidate.

Earlier, the government had reserved the Mayor’s post to a general category woman candidate and Deputy Mayor’s post to a general category candidate.

The High Court had stayed this after a Councillor of Mangalore City Corporation challenged the government’s reservation roster notification.

In the elections to Mangalore City Corporation council on March 7, 2013, the Congress returned to power after a five-year break. Of the 60 seats in the council, it won 35 seats leaving 20 to the BJP, two to the Janata Dal (Secular) and one seat each to the CPI(M), the Social Democratic Party of India and to an independent.

After the new government took over, it announced the roster of reservations on August 23, 2013. This roster had been challenged in the High Court.

Sources in the corporation said that following the High Court’s interim order, now the government would have to issue a notification announcing the new roster of reservation as directed by the court.

Only after that the Regional Commissioner, Mysore, could fix a date for conducting the elections. It required at least seven days’ notice to the councillors to conduct (fix the date) the elections.

Officials in the corporation were not sure whether announcement of elections to the Lok Sabha, expected in a few days, would come in the way of conducting Mayoral elections. They were yet to consult the authorities concerned on this.

The Congress is yet to finalise its Mayoral candidates. Going by the seniority, Councillor-elect like Harinath, Lancelot Pinto, M. Shashidhar Hegde, Naveen D’Souza, Deepak Poojary, Bhaskar Moily, Mahabala Marla are all possible candidates for the post.

Going by the seniority, Jacintha Vijaya Alfred, S. Appi, Kavitha Sanil and Nagaveni are possible contenders for the post of Deputy Mayor.

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