Another PIL against ADC Act comes up
Source: Hueiyen News Service

Imphal, April 19 2010: To add to Manipur Chief Minister O Ibobi Singh's cup of woe over the holding of the elections to the Autonomous District Councils (ADCs) under the controversial Manipur (Hill) Autonomous District Council (Third Amendment) Act, 2008, three petitions seeking court's intervention in holding the elections are pending with the Gauhati High Court.

The three different petitions seeking court's intervention in holding of elections to the (ADCs) under the existing Act received so far by the Gauhati High Court, Imphal Bench, said official source Monday.

The petitions in the form of Public Interest Litigation comes up amidst the series of protest agitations by different tribal bodies against the holding of elections to the ADCs including blockades on the National Highways passing in the state of Manipur.

The court has fixed the hearing two of the PILs in the first week of May while the third one was filed on April 15 last by four individuals.

The first PIL seeks deferring of the ADC election till 6th schedule of the Indian Constitution is extended in the hill areas of the state while the second one prayed the court quashing of the notification with regard to the exercise of delimitation alleging many flaws in the process and the third one seeks court's intervention in reservation of seats for the women in the elections.

The latest PIL praying the court's intervention in the reservation of seats for women in the ADCs was filed by four individuals, Valley Rose Hungyo of Ukhrul, Panti Gonmei of Tamenglong, Chongkhoi Hangsing of Sadar Hills and Rev D Bongmot of Chandel in the court of Gauhati High Court, Imphal Bench on last April 15 through their counsel advocate R Daniel, official source said Monday.

The petitioners sought intervention of the court stating that government failed to materialize to the representations submitted to the chairman of the Hill Areas Committee of Manipur Legislative Assembly, Manipur Chief Secretary and Principal Secretary seeking insertion of a provision on reservations for the women in the third amendment of the ADC Act, 2008 .

Even though, reservation of seats for the women in local bodies like panchayat, municipal councils and other has been in force, no provision included in the recently amended Act under which government is planning to conduct elections shortly.

This has hurt the sentiments of the women of the state particularly those in the hill areas, they lamented.

In a recent ruling of the Supreme Court, it has also been asked to increase the percentage of women reserved seats from 33 to 50, they cited in the petition.