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NC seeks deferment of election to post of SMC Mayor

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“The move violates model code of conduct”

Srinagar: National Conference (NC) has moved a petition challenging the issuance of notification for the conduct of elections to the post of Mayor by Secretary SMC.

The petition has been filed by JKNC’s contesting candidates saying it is a brazen violation of MCC as bye elections to 4 vacant SMC seats is still underway.

Party’s Vice President, Omar Abdullah said in a tweet that the process to fill vacant seats in the Srinagar Municipal Corporation is ongoing with nominations having been filed.

“While the model code of conduct is in place the administration wants the election of the mayor to go ahead. A petition has filed to stop this violation of the MCC,” he tweeted.

Terming the SMC move a gross violation of the Model code of Conduct, party’s contesting candidates Nuzhat Ara and Ali Muhammad Magray today wrote to officials responsible for the adherence of the Model Code of Conduct, asking them to take cognizance of the issue.

The two candidates running for the post of councilors from various wards in the upcoming bye-elections in a written complaint to Chief Electoral Officer (J&K), and District electoral officer, Srinagar said that the holding of a meeting of councilors for the purpose of electing the mayor, while the bye-elections are about to commence was a manifest violation of the MCC in place for the bye-elections to various wards of municipality in Srinagar.

The candidates in their complaint said the adherence to model code of conduct during the upcoming municipal by-elections should be ensured. The applicants brought to their notice that similar provisions were also in vogue elsewhere in the country and that it was clear that while the elections for the council or urban local body are announced and the model code of conduct is in force, an embargo was placed on any meeting of the council or urban local body save and except for the meeting held for relief measures, and that the said embargo would apply with greater force to the meeting wherein by an indirect election the mayor of the very corporation’s whose bye-elections are underway.

“The present indirect election of the mayor election that is slated to be held on the 25.11.2020 would unfairly prejudice the contesting candidates and the candidates seen in close proximity to the winning mayoral candidate would get unfair advantage thereby altering the level playing field as available to the contesting candidates,” the complaint letter reads.

They urged the concerned to take action including deferment of the election to the post of Mayor of SMC ordered vice notification dated no SMC/CS/5027-5116 dated 19.11.2020 being in clear violation of the model code of conduct, till such time results of the bye-elections are declared.

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