Conduct RS polls before assembly poll results: HC

KOCHI, APR 12 (AGENCIES) | Publish Date: 4/12/2021 1:15:33 PM IST

The Kerala high court on Monday ordered the Election Commission of India to conduct polls to Rajya Sabha seats during the term of the current Legislative Assembly.

Justice PV Asha considered two petitions (WP-C No.s 8089 and 8092 of 2021) filed by the secretary of Kerala Legislative Assembly and S Sharma MLA. After announcing that the polls would be completed by April 16th, the Election Commission had postponed them citing a reference from the central government. In court, the Election Commission had contended that it is the next Legislative Assembly that has to elect the Rajya Sabha members.

The court said the power to amend or extend the election schedule should not be invoked normally by the Election Commission and is warranted only when there is a law and order situation or any practical impossibility. Such circumstances are not available in the present case, the court pointed out. Postponement of election is not envisaged either in the Constitution or in the rules in the absence of good and sufficient reasons, the court added.

Stating that the Election Commission is not expected to be influenced on the basis of a reference, the court said the Commission had notified the election to the Legislative Assembly and was aware of it when it announced the election to the Rajya Sabha seats. Once the results to Legislative Assembly election are announced, there would be another electorate for the Rajya Sabha polls. It could have been avoided if the Rajya Sabha polls were held as scheduled. The fact that it is up to the Commission to fix the schedule would not mean that it can fix any date, the court said.



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