A month after the Madras High Court asked the state election commission to complete the entire local body elections procedure by Nov 17, DMK has filed a petition asking to grant contempt of court punishment to the Tamil Nadu State Election Commission and the government for not issuing the notification for the elections by September 18.
DMK has also asked the court to make sure that the election process is completed under the set time frame, which is, November 17.
On September 4, the Madras High Court had ordered that the Tamil Nadu State Election Commission (TNSEC) must issue a notification by September 18 and complete the entire process by November 17.
The petition was filed by RS Bharathi, DMK organisation secretary and stated that the respondents which includes election commission and government officials, did not follow the court orders and action must be taken against them.
“It is humbly prayed that this Hon'ble Court may be pleased to punish the Respondents for violating the common judgment of this Hon'ble Court dated 04.09.2017 by imposing maximum punishment as contemplated under the Contempt of Courts Act, 1971 by imprisoning them to jail and pass such further or other orders as this Hon’ble Court may deem fit and proper to pass in the circumstances of the case and thus render justice,” as stated in the petition.
The petition is expected to come up for hearing by next week.
The civic polls were scheduled for October 2016 but were later put on hold by the Madras High Court, based on a batch of petitions including one filed by the DMK. The High Court passed the orders on the ground that there is “no level playing field available to all parties” and that the state government “did not give sufficient time to other parties to get ready for the elections”. The single judge bench also ordered the State Election Commission to issue fresh dates for local body polls by December 31, 2016.
A delimitation was proposed for local bodies to decide the number of members to be elected by each local body. It was to help redraw boundaries of wards wherever required and also identify wards to be reserved for SC and ST communities.
After which in February 2017, the court had asked to conduct the election by May 31. But election commission had asked for more time and stated that it was facing practical hindrances to conduct the elections.
Later, the court had asked to conduct the elections by August 31, the Commission said without implementing the nine directions issued by the single judge, it was practically impossible to conduct the elections.
Last month, the election commission had stated that it will carry out the delimitation process and then it will be ready to conduct the elections. However, no notifications related to local body elections has been issued till now by the Tamil Nadu State Election Commission.