Supreme Court to hear WB SEC plea against deployment of central forces | India News

The Supreme Court on Monday agreed to hear on Tuesday a petition by West Bengal State Election Commission challenging a June 15 order of the Calcutta high court directing it to requisition central forces for deployment within 48 hours to arrest unabated violence in the run up to the bitterly-contested panchayat polls across the state.
Senior advocate Meenakshi Arora told a vacation bench of Justices Surya Kant and M M Sundresh that the SEC had no authority to requisition central forces as it is done by the state government after an assessment of the law and order situation prevailing in different wards and on finding that the state police is unable to deal with the mischief mongers. The bench said the HC had passed the order on June 15 and that 48 hours have already passed.
“You (SEC) can move the HC and seek more time for such deployment,” the bench suggested. However, when Arora said that SEC is legally not authorised to requisition central forces, the bench agreed to hear its appeal against the HC order on Tuesday. Advocate Sunil Fernandes, appearing for the state government, said a similar appeal has been filed by the Trinamool Congress government challenging the HC direction for deployment of central forces for panchayat polls and argued that the state police was capable of maintaining law and order.
He requested the SC to also hear the state’s appeal on Tuesday along with that of the SEC. Violence has claimed many lives since the June 9 announcement of polls for nearly 74,000 panchayat seats, for which elections would be held on July 8.

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