The Hyderabad High Court on Wednesday asked the Election Commission to go ahead with its plan of publishing the voters list in Telangana, which is heading to the polls on December 7. Last week, the court barred the EC from publishing the revised list of electoral rolls on October 8 and said that it would hear a petition filed by Congress leaders.
The court directed the poll panel not to publish the electoral rolls till the hearing on a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) is completed. The court directed the Election Commission to file a counter affidavit on the points raised by Congress leader M. Shashidhar Reddy in his petition. The petitioner alleged large-scale discrepancies in the state electoral rolls. He claimed that the names of about 70 lakh voters were missing from the voter list.
The ECI informed the court that any voter who was eligible could submit claims and objections, demanding changes and rectifications, even after the rolls were published, until the filing of nominations took place.
The Hyderabad High Court took up the hearing of the case after the Supreme Court, where the Congress leader had originally filed his petition, and had said that it would be open to the High Court to extend the final date of publishing the electoral rolls if it found any merit in the grievances raised by the petitioner.
Telangana Assembly was dissolved on September 6, nearly nine months before its term was to end, to clear the way for early elections.
The Election Commission has already announced the poll schedule for Telangana along with four other states. Telangana will witness single-phase polling on December 7 to elect a 119-member Assembly. Chief Election Commissioner O.P Rawat said the counting of votes will be held on December 11.
With the announcement, the model code of conduct came into force in the state with immediate effect.