W.P.(C) No. 20843 of 2016. Case: Sananda Barik and Ors. Vs State Election Commissioner, State of Odisha and Ors.. High Court of Orissa (India)

Case NumberW.P.(C) No. 20843 of 2016
CounselFor Appellant: H.S. Mishra, A.K. Mishra, A.K. Tripathy and R. Dash, Advs. and For Respondents: B. Bhuyan, Additional Government Advocate
JudgesBiswanath Rath, J.
IssueConstitution of India - Articles 243B, 243K, 243K(4); Orissa Grama Panchayats Act, 1964 - Sections 150, 27; Representation of the People Act 1950 - Sections 18, 20
Judgement DateJanuary 03, 2017
CourtHigh Court of Orissa (India)


Biswanath Rath, J.

  1. This is a writ petition filed by petitioners, who are husband and wife, residents of Ward No. 4, Village-Janmura in the district of Subarnapur challenging the order of the competent authorities for non-inclusion of their name in the voter list meant for village-Janmura under Janmura Grama Panchayat of Sonepur Panchayat Samiti, 2016. The writ petition also involved the order passed by the appellate authority involving the above issues.

  2. Petitioners case as narrated in the writ petition is that the notification for Panchayat reorganization ignored the formation of Janmura Grama Panchayat in the district of Subarnapur, villagers of Janmura Grama Panchayat approached this Court in W.P.(C) No. 14170 of 2016. Following the direction contained in W.P.(C) No. 14170 of 2016, a new Grama Panchayat in the name of Janmura Grama Panchayat has been created by bifurcating the previous Kalapathara Grama Panchayat. For the creation of new Janmura Grama Panchayat while attending to the Government action for preparation of area/boundary of different wards vis-à-vis reservation along with final voter list of Grama Panchayat was taken place, steps were taken for addition, deletion and correction in the voter list in a ward wise manner in the Grama Panchayat, Panchayat Samiti as well as Zilla Parisad election. Considering that petitioners were registered as voters of Constituency No. 65 of the Sonepur Assembly Constituency in the voter list prepared on 1.1.2016 and since the petitioners were resident of village Janmura, desired to delete their names from voter list of Sonepur Assembly Constituency with the address Ward No. 2 attempts were made to add their names with the address at village-Janpura under the then Kalapathara Grama Panchayat. Receiving application in the above regard, the Returning Officer-cum-Sub-Collector, Subarnapur accepted the application of the petitioners and changed their address from Ward No. 2 of the Sonepur Municipality area to the address of Ward No. 4 of village-Janmura under Kalapathara Grama Panchayat and a corrected voter list for the Assembly Constituency for 2017 was prepared clearly indicating the names of the petitioners as voters of village-Janmura vide Annexuere-2. It is when the revision of voter list of Grama Panchayat keeping in view the Grama Panchayat election is concerned, taken place following a direction under Annexure-1 for preparation of voter list for the purpose of Panchayat Election, as the petitioners did not find their name in the draft Electoral Roll, applied in appropriate form to the opposite party No. 4 to add their names in the voter list to be finalized for Janmura Grama Panchayat. It is asserted that receipt of application, both the petitioners were assured that necessary correction will be made during preparation of revised final voter list and it is alleged that the petitioners were surprised and shocked to notice that their names did not find place in the final voter list by virtue of an order refusing to add their names on the premises that petitioners have not resided in the village for over six months. It is alleged that there was neither any inquiry nor involvement of the petitioners before passing such final order and thus being aggrieved by the order of non-inclusion of their name in the voter list, an appeal was preferred before the opposite party No. 3 appearing at Annexure-3 which also got dismissed and dismissal of the appeal paved way for the present writ petition.

  3. Assailing the impugned orders passed by the Original Authority as well as the Revisional Authority under Annexure-4, Sri H.S. Mishra, learned counsel appearing for the petitioners contended that the impugned orders have been passed with ulterior motive and under the influence of the political rivals just to see that petitioners are kept away from the voting. The original order was passed not even giving opportunity of hearing to the petitioners. Discussions, grounds and reasons of the opposite party No. 3 in the impugned order under Annexure-4 remain completely beyond the scope of preparation of voter list and law governing the field. It is also alleged that the decision for exclusion of the petitioners from the voter list as well as the impugned orders also remain contrary to the guideline fixed for the purpose by the election Commissioner issued vide Annexure-1. It is contended by Sri H.S. Mishra, learned counsel that when on the very same ground Electoral roll for the Assembly Constituency has been altered, there was no reason for rejection of the claim of the petitioners in the matter of inclusion of their names in the voter list for the Panchayat Samiti purpose. It appears two different principles have been adopted by the competent authority while preparing the voter list for Assembly Constituency and the other for preparation of voter meant for Panchayat Samiti or the Grama Panchayat, which is not permissible in the eye of law and when the petitioners name is already registered as voters of Janmura village in the voter list of Sonepur Assembly Constituency, there is no reason for rejecting the claim of the petitioners while preparing the voter list meant for Panchayat Samiti or the Grama Panchayat. The orders of the authority also violate the instruction issued by the opposite party No. 1 under Annexure-6. It is under the above circumstances...

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