Minister of Food and Civil Supplies Chhagan Bhujbal
Minister of Food and Civil Supplies Chhagan Bhujbal
Photo Credit: Twitter/@ChhaganCBhujbal Twitter

A day after State Election Commission announced the dates for by-elections for Zilla Parishad, Maharashtra Minister and NCP leader Chhagan Bhujbal on Wednesday demanded to postpone the by-elections, reported ABP Live.

As per a report by TV9 Marathi, Chhagan Bhujbal said he will meet Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray regarding OBC reservation and Zilla Parishad election.

Chhagan Bhujbal, during a press conference, said a census of OBCs is required for OBC reservation. But due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was not possible to conduct a census, reported ABP Live.

He further said that 56,000 posts are being affected due to this. "We have decided to go to the Supreme Court and demand that the Central government should provide us data," Chhagan Bhujbal was quoted as saying by TV Marathi.

This comes a day after the State Election Commission on Tuesday announced the dates for by-elections in five Zilla Parishads and 33 Panchayat Samitis, seats in which were vacant following the Supreme Court’s March 4 order quashing OBC reservation in local bodies.

The Supreme Court said reservation in favour of Other Backward Classes (OBCs) in concerned local bodies in Maharashtra cannot exceed aggregate 50 per cent of the total seats reserved for Scheduled Castes, the Scheduled Tribes and OBCs taken together.

The apex court, while reading down section 12(2)(c) of the Maharashtra Zilla Parishads and Panchayat Samitis Act, 1961, that provided 27 per cent quota for persons belonging to backward class, also quashed notifications issued by the State Election Commission (SEC) in 2018 and 2020 to the extent of providing seat reservation in local bodies concerned for OBCs.

It said election results of OBC candidates, which had been made subject to the outcome of pleas pending before it, are declared as non-est in law and the vacancy of seats be forthwith filled up by the SEC for the remainder term of the local bodies concerned.

(With inputs from Agencies)

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