SC seeks replies on plea against delimitation commission from parties

YB WEB DESK. Dated: 5/14/2022 2:01:10 PM

New Delhi, May 13 The Supreme Court on Friday sought a response from the Centre, Jammu, and Kashmir administration, and Election Commission of India (ECI) on a plea of two Kashmir residents challenging the government’s decision to constitute the delimitation commission for redrawing the assembly and Lok Sabha constituencies in the Union Territory. A bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and MM Sundresh issued notice to the Centre and Election Commission of India and sought their responses within six weeks and said that the rejoinder affidavit shall be filed in two weeks thereafter. At the outset, counsel appearing for two Srinagar residents Haji Abdul Gani Khan and Dr. Mohammad Ayub Mattoo, said that contrary to the scheme of the constitution, this delimitation exercise was carried out and alteration of boundaries and inclusion of extended areas could not be done. The bench said that the delimitation commission was formed sometime back and asked the petitioners, where were they during that time and why did not they challenge the constitution of the commission. The counsel said that as per the delimitation order, it is the election commission that is empowered to do any changes. The bench said that it is asking a specific question under Article 32 of the constitution why you have not challenged the formation of the commission itself and do you challenge the abrogation of Article 370 also. On March 6, 2020, the Union Government, Ministry of Law and Justice (Legislative Department) had issued a notification in exercise of power under Section 3 of the Delimitation Act, 2002, constituting a Delimitation Commission, with former Supreme Court judge (Retd) Ranjana Prakash Desai as Chairperson, for the purpose of delimitation of Assembly and Parliamentary constituencies in the Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir and the state of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, and Nagaland, for a period of one year.


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