The Supreme Court on Tuesday virtually stayed elections in seven municipal areas in West Bengal as it ordered a status quo in the matter after the state contended that polls could be held after these bodies are converted into municipal corporations.
A bench of Justices A K Sikri and Uday U Lalit issued a notice to the state election commission on an appeal by the state government against a Calcutta High Court order. The High Court had asked the state election commission to hold elections to seven local bodies by June 16.
Senior advocate Kapil Sibal, appearing for the state government, told the bench that the process of converting these bodies into municipal corporations would be over by June 15 and the elections could be held any time thereafter. He said the state would need more time to have polls conducted in these areas.
The High Court had refused to modify the election schedule for these seven municipal bodies, compelling the West Bengal government to move the apex court. The seven civic bodies are: Asansol Municipal Corporation, Kulti Municipality, Raniganj Municipality, Jamuria Municipality, Bidhannagar Municipality, Rajarhat-Gopalpur Municipality and Bally Municipality.