BHAGWAN SAMPATRAO GHODMARE & ANR. Vs. THE STATE OF MAHARASHTRA & ORS.
HIGH COURT OF BOMBAY (AT: NAGPUR)
Bhagwan Sampatrao Ghodmare And Anr.
THE STATE OF MAHARASHTRA AND ORS.
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B.P. Dharmadhikari, J. -
(1.) Considering the nature of controversy, by issuing rule and making it returnable forthwith, we have heard the matter finally with the consent of Shri Naik, learned counsel for the petitioners, Shri Tembhare, learned AGP for respondent Nos. 1, 3 & 4 and Shri Sambre, learned counsel for respondent No. 5.
(2.) The petitioners are agriculturists in the jurisdiction of Respondent No. 5 - Agricultural Produce Market Committee (APMC). Petitioner No. 1 is the Director of Vihirgaon Seva Sahakari Sanstha, Vihirgaon, Tahsil and District - Nagpur and Petitioner No. 2 is the President of Seva Sahakari Sanstha, Bahadura, Post - Vihirgaon, Tahsil and District - Nagpur. Their societies are members of Respondent No. 5 - Agricultural Produce Market Committee, Nagpur, and the petitioners claim that they are voters in the elections of APMC i.e. for electing its Directors. The order dated 10.01.2017 passed under Section 14(3) and (3A) of the Maharashtra Agricultural Produce Marketing (Development and Regulation) Act, 1963, (hereinafter referred to as the Act), is questioned on the ground that without recording any opinion properly, as mandated by those provisions, mechanically proposal put up by the subordinates has been accepted and elections are postponed.
(3.) Shri Naik, learned counsel in addition submits that in 2012 elections of local authorities like Nagpur Municipal Corporation, Zilla Parishad, Nagpur and Respondent No. 5 - APMC were simultaneously conducted. As such, the fact that the elections of these local authorities are being held, cannot be sufficient to postpone elections of Respondent No. 5 - APMC. By reading out impugned order and legal provisions, he submits that non application of mind by respondent No. 1 is apparent because the grounds prescribed in the statute and the reasons expected in support thereof, do not find any evaluation in the impugned communication. Lastly, it is submitted that the election process has already started inasmuch as on 01.12.2016, objections were invited and thereafter provisional list of voters was published on 26.12.2016. The final list of voters was also ready thereafter and it was to be published on 13.01.2017. Thus, election process had already commenced and it could not have been interdicted.;
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