Mumbai, Apr 18 (UNI) Maharashtra Chief Minister today denied that he was victimising State Election Commissioner Nandlal and, on the contrary, claimed that his (CM) confidential remarks enabled the latter become the Additional Chief Secetary.
Even the statement of Mr Nandlal that the ''Chief Minister had pressurised me'' is also a breach of privilage, Mr Deshmukh said making a suo moto statement in both the Houses, while clarifying his position on the controversy over the allegations, levelled by the State Election Commissioner recently.
The Chief Minister maintained that as per the laid down procedure, the the State Election Commission (SEC) conducts the direct elections to the local bodies and then the government holds the internal elections for the post of mayor or municipal presidents, who are elected by corporators and councillors respectively.
He further said that the government had sought the opinion of first State Election Commissioner D N Chaudhary as to who should conduct the internal elections of the local bodies, to which he had opined that it was the government who should conduct the same.
''If we want to change this system and give these rights to the Election Commission, we will have to make amendments in the law'', Mr Deshmukh said.
On March 7, Mr Nandlal had issued a notification on conducting the local bodies elections of mayor, municipality presidents and chairpersons of panchayat samitis. He had said that these elections should be conducted as per the existing laws by the SEC, which is empowered to monitor all the elections of the local bodies.
''At the national level too, the Election Commission conducts the general elections of the state assemblies and Lok Sabha, but the elections of the Speaker, or even the Chief Minister is done by the members of the respective houses'', he remarked.
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