Governor Ram Naresh Yadav on Wednesday signed the notification for delimitation of Bhopal and Indore municipal corporation areas, thus paving the way for civic elections in the two major cities. The public relations office of the governor confirmed to HT that the notification had been signed.
Official sources said the polls were now likely in December end or January.
Indore collector Akash Tripathi said they would be ready by the last week of December, even though he made it clear that it was up to the election commission to declare the poll schedule.
After the high court had quashed the notifications for delimitation of four municipal areas (including Jabalpur and Chhindwara) in separate orders in the third week of October and earlier this month, the elections to these civic bodies got stalled.
The court had taken objection to the fact that the delimitation notification was issued by the respective district collectors, when it should have been issued by the governor. Through the notification, additional villages were included in these civic areas, increasing the number of municipal wards.
Following the HC objection, the state government got the delimitation notification of Jabalpur and Chhindwara areas signed by the governor on November 14. On Wednesday, the files related to Bhopal and Indore municipal areas’ delimitation was sent to the governor, who signed it from his hospital bed in the evening.
Now, with the formality done, all eyes would be on the date of municipal elections in these four cities. The elections to 280 local bodies in the state are scheduled to be held on November 28 and December 2.
With the governor giving his nod for holding the polls, it will now take the district administration at least four weeks to complete the pre-election work, officials in Indore said.
The Indore collector said that since the court had nullified all the processes taken after the issuing of initial notification under Section 405 (1) of MP Municipal Corporation Act and Rules, 1956 for including 29 villages within the municipal limits, the administration would have to undertake the work of ward delimitation and ward reservation all over again. Before all this, he added, another gazette notification would have to be issued.
Political observers said that with fresh ward delimitation and reservation, political equations are also likely to change.
Anil Trivedi, on whose petition the high court had quashed the expansion of municipal limits, refused to comment. "I will have to see the governor's order before deciding on future course of action," he said.