WHILE INQUIRING whether any consistent guidelines or parameters are being followed by the Delimitation Commission while marking reservation of the legislative assembly constituencies, the Punjab and Haryana High Court Thursday directed the Chief Electoral Officer Haryana to remain present in the court on Friday.
“It may also be necessary to go into the aspect of objective of reservation of seats in view of provisions of Article 332(3) with reference to Constituency Assembly debates,” the order passed by a division bench of Justices Rajan Gupta and Manjari Kaul Nehru reads.
The order was passed by the court in a case challenging the reserved category status of the Jhajjar constituency. The assembly constituency is reserved for Scheduled Caste (SC) candidates since 1976. Jhajjar resident Bijender Singh (47) in his petition has said Jat and Yadav are the dominant castes in Jhajjar as per the 2011 census and not the people belonging to Schedule Caste.
On Thursday, advocate Aditya Yadav on behalf of the petitioner argued that the Delimitation Commission has made reservation arbitrarily by reserving one seat in almost every district without taking into consideration the ratio of castes, population and the dominant caste factor. Yadav added that 17 seats are to be reserved for SCs in the state in accordance with the law and such reservation has to be in only that Legislative Assembly which has dominant caste population of SCs.
“For instance Jhajjar Assembly Constituency has been kept reserved for SCs where dominant castes are Jats and Yadavs. In Faridabad, none of the assembly seats is reserved for SCs where there population is very high. This defeats the very objective of reservation,” HC was told.
The counsel representing the ECI sought time to seek instructions. However, HC also said that it will examine that whether the petition was maintainable or not. The petitioner has said that he will be fully eligible and entitled to contest the elections if Jhajjar is declared general category seat.
Dahiya’s election from Rai: HC summons Sonepat DEO
Hearing a petition challenging the 2014 election of Congress leader Jai Tirath Dahiya from Rai constituency of Haryana, the Punjab and Haryana High Court Thursday summoned the district election officer, Sonepat, on September 18 with all necessary record and information regarding the serial numbers of the candidates of the constituency.
During the hearing. the HC perused a report filed by an ECI official on the EVM data of the election and said the serial number of the voters have been highlighted with a marker in the report and also the candidates to whom the votes have been given are also depicted by serial numbers.
“It is not known as to which candidate is at which serial number. The information would be available only with the DEO,” the order passed by a single bench said.