Supreme Court upholds Orissa HC’s order on seat reservation in ULBs

Bhubaneswar: The Supreme Court on Friday upheld the order of Orissa High Court regarding reservation of seats in different urban local bodies (ULBs).

The apex court rejected the Odisha Government’s plea, which had challenged the Orissa High Court’s order regarding reservation of seats in ULBs.

The High Court had ruled that reservation of seats for STs, SCs and other backward classes (OBC) should not exceed 50% in ULB polls in the non-scheduled areas for the forthcoming ULB polls. This excludes scheduled areas.

The court had also told the state government to limit the reservation of seats for OBCs to not more than 11 per cent as against 27 per cent earlier.

Challenging the High Court verdict, Odisha Government had moved the Supreme Court through a Special Leave Petition (SLP).

It may be mentioned here that elections in several ULBs in the state are due this year.

During analysis of reservation status of SC, ST and Backward Class of Citizens (BCC) of 113 ULBs, it is seen that 55 ULBs have crossed the limit of 50 per cent of reservation of seats. A similar situation also arises regarding the reservation of office of Mayor for municipal corporations.

Notably, elections to 93 ULBs are due this year. While the term of 66 ULBs, including that of Berhampur Municipal Corporation, will end on September 30, 2018, those of 20 others will end on December 4, 2018. Two other ULBs will complete their terms on December 9, 2018.