HYDERABAD: Citing the delay in allocation of IAS officers to the State, the KCR government on Monday informed the High Court that it needs 249 days to initiate the process for holding elections to the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation.
The government filed a counter-affidavit to this effect before a division bench of the high court, comprising Chief Justice Kalyan Jyoti Sengupta and Justice P V Sanjay Kumar, which had earlier directed it to submit the poll schedule.
The bench had issued the directive on a petition filed by the Forum for Good Governance challenging inaction of the government with regard to holding GHMC polls even after expiry of the elected council’s tenure and continuing to run the civic body through a special officer.
In its counter-affidavit, the government, represented by principal secretary MG Gopal, submitted that administration of various departments had been hit for months due to the inordinate delay in cadre allocation of IAS officers to the State.
As the term of the elected members of the civic body ended on Dec 3, 2014, a special officer was appointed to run the administration for six months, it explained. Referring to the court order issued in August last over the delimitation of wards, the government said it had initiated the process as per the 2011 Census and proposed to fix the strength of the elected members of the GHMC at 200.
“A total of 249 days is required for delimitation of wards to 200, preparation of wardwise and polling station wise electoral rolls, conducting door-to-door survey for identification of BC voters, publication of wardwise final electoral rolls with BC voters, notifying reserved seats etc. The election process will be initiated after completion of the statutory process,” it said.
Urging the court to dismiss the petition, it further submitted that it would submit a ‘readiness report’ to the State Election Commission by the second week of December for conducting elections to the GHMC. After perusing the counter-affidavit, the bench directed the petitioner to file a reply and adjourned the case to next week. It also suggested that the State government should see if it can hold the elections much before and not take as much time as 249 days.