In a major setback for Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), the Delhi High Court on Saturday stayed the re-election for six members of the Standing Committee of MCD which was scheduled for February 27. The court observed that Mayor Shelly Oberoi did not have the authority to declare such an election as “null and void” as per the regulations .
The court was hearing a petition by two BJP councillors, Shikha Roy and Kamaljeet Sehrawat, against Mayor Shelly Oberoi’s decision to declare one vote invalid during the election for the six-member Standing Committee on Friday.
“The petitioners have drawn the attention of this court to regulation 51 and 52 of the DMC Act,” the court said. After perusing the Act, the court observed that, “Prima facie it appears that the Mayor is conducting elections on February 27 without declaring the election result of February 27, which is in violation of the DMC Act rules.”
Meanwhile, counsel for the respondents contended that the election had not yet culminated, and the returning officer had given a note detailing that the election process was vitiated due to unruly behavior of the members.
However, the Court observed, “It has been admitted that counting of votes has culminated…this court prima facie finds that the election has been conducted though result has not been declared yet.”
“From the perusal of regulation 51, it is nowhere reflected that the Mayor has authority to declare an election of the standing committee as null and void,” it further said.
“No purpose will be served by conducting fresh elections,” the Court ruled, issuing a notice to the Mayor that the re-elections were stayed.
Massive chaos ensued at the MCD House on Friday after Delhi Mayor Shelly Oberoi declared one vote invalid in the Standing Committee polls to elect six members. Councillors from both Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) exchanged blows, kicks and slaps in what turned into an ugly brawl.
After adjourning the House, the Mayor announced that fresh elections would be held on February 27.