The High Court of Tripura on Tuesday ordered the State Government to conduct elections to the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) by May 17.
The order was passed by a 2-judge bench of the Tripura High Court comprising Chief Justice AK Qureshi and Justice SG Chatterjee.
The order was passed by the Tripura High Court after hearing a writ petition filed by a person named Apu Debbarma seeking elections to the TTAADC at the earliest.
The Tripura High Court in its order asked the State Government to hand over power to new elected Council by May 17.
“The term of the administrator can no longer be extended. The voters’ list will be published by January 15,” said lawyer of Apu Debbarma – Mintu Debbarma.
Earlier, the Tripura High Court had expressed dismay over the delay in holding of elections to the TTAADC and sought response from the Tripura Government, State Election Commission, Election Commission of India (ECI), Tripura Governor and others while hearing the plea challenging delay in conducting the Council polls.
The term of the previous TTAADC Government came to an end on May 17 last year.
However, elections to the Council could not be held due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Administration of the TTAADC was handed over to the Tripura Governor for six months, and later extended for another six months on November 17.
Delay in holding of elections to the TTAADC has been severely criticised by the opposition parties in the State.
The Congress had demanded the State government to approach the State Election Commission to declare polling dates for the TTAADC.
The TTAADC is governed by a Council of 30 members.
Out of 30 members, 28 are elected through adult suffrage, while 2 are nominated by the Governor.
Out of 28 elected seats, 25 are reserved for Scheduled Tribes.
Notably, areas falling under TTAADC are considered to be a stronghold of the CPI-M.
CPI-M had been ruling the TTAADC for the past 15 years, with no other parties in the State being able to secure even a single seat in the Council.
Meanwhile, political parties in Tripura have already started preparations for the elections to the Tripura Tribal Areas Autonomous District Council (TTAADC) on a war footing.