KUNA MANIKYAM PANDU Vs. GOVERNMENT OF ANDHRA PRADESH
LAWS(APH)-1992-9-21
HIGH COURT OF ANDHRA PRADESH
Decided on September 08,1992

KUNA MANIKYAM PANDU Appellant
VERSUS
GOVERNMENT OF A.P. Respondents

JUDGEMENT

M.N.Rao, J. - (1.)On 6-3-88 elections were held in 25 newly constituted municipalities in the State of Andhra Pradesh for election of Chairmen and Councillors. The Chairmen and Councillors of nine (9) municipalities have filed these writ petitions seeking a declaration that they are entitled to continue in their respective offices till 21-3-1993 or in the alternative a writ of certiorari to quash sub-section (5) of Section 7 of the A.P. Municipalities Act, 1965 (hereinafter referred to as the Act).
(2.)There are 108 municipalities in the State of Andhra Pradesh. Section 3(1) of the Act confers power on the State Government by notification in the A.P. Gazette to constitute a local area in the vicinity thereof or to exclude from a municipality any local area comprised therein. Section 5 lays down that there shall be constituted for every municipality a body called the municipal council having authority over the municipality and consisting of such number of councillors as may be notified in the A.P. Gazette by the Government in the manner specified therein. Sub-section (2) lays down as to who shall be the ex- officio councillor of a municipality and the manner in which he shall be elected. By Section 6, every municipality constituted under Sec.5 shall be a body corporate with a perpetual succession and a common seal. Section 7 contains special provisions in the case of newly constituted and reconstituted councils. When a municipality is constituted for the first time the Government is empowered by sub-section (1) to appoint a special officer to exercise the powers, discharge the duties and perform the functions of the council, its chairman and the Commissioner. Under sub-section (1) of Section 23 the Chairman is elected by the persons whose names appear in the electoral roll for the municipality from among themselves, in the manner prescribed. Subsection (3) lays down that save as otherwise expressly provided in the Act, the term of office of the Chairman who is elected at an ordinary election shall be five years from the date, appointed by the election authority for the first meeting of the council. The proviso to sub-section (3) empowers the Government to extend the term of office of the Chairman. Under sub-section (1) of Section 20 the term of office of elected councillors save as otherwise expressly provided in the Act, shall be five years from the date appointed by the election authority tor the first meeting of the council. Section 7 incorporates special provision in the case of newly constituted and reconstituted councils. Sub-section (1) says that notwithstanding any other provision in the Act, where a municipality is constituted for the first time, me Government may appoint a Special Officer to exercise the powers, discharge the duties and perform the function of the council, its Chairman and the Commissioner. Sub-section (2) lays down:
"7(2) The Special Officer shall cause arrangements for election to Be made so that the Chairman and the elected councillors may come in to office on such date as may, be specified by the Government by an order made in this behalf : Provided that the Government may, from time to time, postpone the date within a period of one year so specified if, for any reason, the elections cannot be completed before such date."
Sub-section (5) says:
"(5) The term of office of the elected councillors and the chairman shall expire at the end of five years if the date specified under sub-section (2) is the first day of July, and in other cases at the end of five years from the first day of July, immediately preceding such date"

(3.)Until 1986, election to the office of the Chairman of a municipality was by indirect election. By Act 33 of 1986 Section 23 of the principal Act was suitably amended providing for direct election of the Chairman by the registered voters of the municipality. Section20 (l)(a)priorto the Amendment Act 33 of 1986 was in the following terms:
"20 (l) (a): The term of office of elected councillors shall save as otherwise expressly provided in this Act, be five years beginning and expiring at noon on the first day of July."
After the Amendment it reads:
"20 (l){a) The term of office of elected councillors shall, save as otherwise expressly provided in this Act, be five years from the date appointed by the election authority for the first meeting of the Council."
(Proviso omitted)
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