The Election Commission on Wednesday decided to keep in abeyance the schedule of elections to fill three Rajya Sabha seats from Kerala after the Law Ministry flagged some issues. "The commission... had announced the schedule for biennial election for three seats in the Council of States (Rajya Sabha) from Kerala... In the meanwhile, a reference has been received from the Ministry of Law and Justice. Pending examination of the reference, the commission has decided to keep the aforementioned proposed notification and schedule in abeyance till further orders," the commission said in a statement.
Election to three Rajya Sabha seats from Kerala falling vacant next month was to be held on April 12. Members of Parliament Abdul Wahab of the Indian Union Muslim Leaguge (IUML), KK Ragesh of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) and Vayalar Ravi of the Congress are retiring on April 21. The notification for the biennial elections was to be issued on Wednesday.
While Vayalar Ravi has been an MP for four terms, it is the second term for Abdul Wahab and first term for KK Ragesh. Members of Legislative Assembly elect Rajya Sabha members. The MLAs of the outgoing Assembly, in which the ruling LDF has a majority, were to elect the three new members.
Kerala Assembly Elections will be held on April 6 and counting will take place on May 2. Earlier the Election Commission had issued guidelines on how COVID-19 protocols should be abided while conducting the elections to Rajya Sabha. As per the notification which now stands cancelled, nominations could be made till March 31 and polling would have taken place on April 12 between 9 am and 4 pm. Counting was also scheduled to be held on the same day.