Delhi HC green signal for DSGMC polls
The Delhi high court on Thursday gave the go-ahead for polls to the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC).
A division bench comprising acting Chief Justice AK Sikri and Justice Rajiv Sahai Endlaw set aside the order of a single-judge bench that had restrained the Directorate of Gurdwara Elections (DGE), which is under the city government, from issuing a notification for the elections without updating the voter rolls.
The single judge had passed the restraining orders following a petition filed by Harmohan Singh, who had said that polls on the basis of "list of voters that contain duplicate and non-Sikhs" could cause "unfair representation".
The judge had thus given the government a month's time to complete fresh delimitation in the 46 wards and prepare electoral rolls with photographs of voters before issuing a notification.
The DGE challenged the verdict, saying that the judge had no right to pass such orders once the poll process was set in motion. Senior advocate KTS Tulsi, appearing for the DGE, said that delimitation would take a long time and could be done only after the elections.
On Thursday, the division bench, which had reserved its judgement on February 22, agreed with the DGE's contention and asked the Delhi government, headed by the Lieutenant Governor, to hold polls "at the earliest" by fixing a fresh schedule.
"The work of delimitation and preparation of fresh electoral rolls, if found to be necessary, shall be undertaken immediately and ought to be completed well in time so that such a situation does not occur when the next election becomes due," the bench ruled.
As per the schedule announced earlier, the voting was to be held on March 11, while the filing of nominations was to start on February 16.