Odisha notifies amended municipal laws to keep quota ceiling within 50 pc
Bhubaneswar, Oct 12 (PTI) Paving the way for holding the much-awaited urban local bodies (ULBs) polls, the state government has notified the Odisha Municipal Laws (Amendment) Act, 2021 making a provision for keeping the overall reservation in all urban civic bodies within 50 per cent.
The Law Department issued the gazette notification Monday after making necessary amendments to the Odisha Municipal Act, 1950 and the Odisha Municipal Corporation Act, 2003, an official said.
Seats will be reserved for backward classes in every municipality not exceeding 27 per cent subject to the ceiling limit of 50 per cent of the total number of seats of the municipalities, including the seats reserved for SC, ST, and backward classes taken together.
The same rule is also applicable to offices of the chairperson of municipalities and mayor of municipal corporations.
The Orissa High Court in 2013 had observed that the upper ceiling limit of reservation of seats for the SC, ST, and backward classes should not exceed 50 per cent in accordance with a Supreme Court judgement in the K Krishna Murthy case.
The state government had moved the Supreme Court through a Special Leave Petition (SLP) and subsequently through a review petition challenging the High Court order.
The apex court, however, upheld the decision of the high court.
To comply with the decision of the High Court, delivered on the basis of orders of the Supreme Court, it has become necessary to limit the total extent of reservation for election in ULBs to 50 per cent, the notification said.
The government will give priority to STs and SCs in reservation and the remaining seats, if any, will be reserved for the backward classes with a maximum ceiling of 27 per cent, the official said.
With the issuance of the notification, the state’s Housing and Urban Development Department will now have to initiate the election process.
Elections to the civic bodies have not been held for three years after the expiry of the term of the elected bodies in September 2018.