Mumbai: BMC to rework electoral ward reservation; may reserve 64 wards for OBC community

After the Supreme Court order on May 4, the State Election Commission (SEC) had directed the BMC to complete the required election procedure.

Kalpesh MhamunkarUpdated: Friday, July 22, 2022, 08:36 AM IST
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Mumbai: BMC to rework electoral ward reservation; may reserve 64 wards for OBC community (Representative Photo) | PTI

With the Supreme Court approval to the Banthia Commission report on OBC population and paving the way for reservations to the community in the local body polls, the BMC will have to again rework the electoral ward reservation process.

According to BMC officials, considering the increased wards, 64 wards can be reserved for OBC community candidates. In the last BMC election held in 2017, 61 seats were reserved for the OBC community.

After the Supreme Court order on May 4, the State Election Commission (SEC) had directed the BMC to complete the required election procedure.

Thereafter, the civic body completed ward demarcation, ward reservation, preparation of voters’ list and invited tenders for the basic equipment required for setting up of booths.

On May 31, the BMC had conducted a lottery for the electoral ward reservation where of the total 236 wards, 109 were reserved for women. Similarly, 15 wards were reserved for the Scheduled Cast (SC) candidates, of which seven were reserved for women SC candidates. Two seats were reserved for the Scheduled Tribe (ST) community of which one was reserved for ST women candidates.

Deputy commissioner (Special) Sanjog Kabre said, “We will have to conduct a lottery for the OBC electoral ward reservation once again. With 27 per cent reservation for the community, 64 seats will have to be reserved for the OBCs. Of these, 32 could be reserved for women from the OBC community. While doing so, the reserved seats for SC and ST candidates will remain unchanged. Fresh reservation will have to be given from the open seats,” adding, “We are waiting for the SEC orders and start the work and hold the lottery.”

There were a total 227 electoral wards in the 2017 BMC elections. Considering the increase in population, nine wards were increased this year taking the total number of wards to 236.

After giving reservation to OBC candidates this year, 155 seats will remain for the open candidates. Prabhakar Shinde, BJP group leader in BMC said, “The 2017 elections were conducted on the basis of the 2011 Census. This time, the BMC increased the wards without a new Census, and we had objected to it. We had also raised objections on ward reservations but the BMC didn’t listen to us. We hope the civic body takes note of our concerns this time.”

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