The stay will be operational only if calendar of events for the polls is not issued

The Karnataka High Court on Thursday stayed the recent government notification through which roster of reservation for the posts of Mayor and Deputy Mayor for the 16th term in some cities of the State was announced.

However, the court made it clear that the stay would be operational only if the calendar of events to hold elections to these posts is not issued already.

Justice Ravi Malimath passed the interim order on a petition filed by M. Abdul Azeez of Mangalore questioning the August 21 notification issued by the Urban Development Department. The government had announced the roster of reservation with respect to Mangalore, Hubli-Dharwad, Belgaum, Davangere, Bellary, Gulbarga, Mysore, and Bangalore.

While the Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Bangalore for the 15th term were elected on September 4, the Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Mysore for the 16th term were elected on Thursday. The other corporations are set for mayoral elections for the 16th term shortly.

The petitioner has complained that the government did not provide an opportunity to the affected parties to have their say with regard to their grievances on the issue of rotation before fixing the roster of reservation as directed by the High Court in 2000.

Also, the petitioner has cited the High Court’s 2009 verdict in which the court had directed the authorities to announce the roster of reservation for such posts at least six months prior to the expiry of the term of office of incumbents.

Eshwarappa’s case

Modifying its Wednesday’s order, the High Court on Thursday quashed the order of the Special Lokayukta Court, Shimoga, which had referred to the Lokayukta Police for investigation the complaint against the former Deputy Chief Minister K.S. Eshwarappa for allegedly amassing wealth disproportionate to his known sources of income.

The court on Wednesday disposed of petitions filed by Mr. Eshwarappa and his family members after the complainant, B. Vinod, submitted a memo stating that he would withdraw the private complaint as sanction for prosecution is essential as ruled in recent verdicts of the High Court.

However, Justice K.N. Keshavanarayana thought it necessary to modify his order for the reason that even if the complaint is withdrawn, the Special Court has no power to recall its order of referring the complaint for investigation under Section 156(3) of the Code of Criminal Procedure. While quashing the probe ordered by the Special Court, the High Court has asked the complainant to submit a formal application before the Special Court to withdraw the complaint according to the undertaking given before the High Court.