The Allahabad High Court has observed that under the U.P. Kshetra Panchayats and Zila Panchayats Adhiniyam, 1961, an elected member of the Kshettra Panchayat shall be deemed to have vacated his office from the date on which notice of his resignation is received in the office of Kshetra Panchayat.
The bench of Justice Manoj Kumar Gupta and Justice Dr. Yogendra Kumar Srivastava further observed that the vacancy in the office of Kshettra Panchayat becomes effective from the date, the resignation notice of a member is received in the office of the Kshetra Panchayat.
Essentially, Pramukh of Kshetra Panchayat, Gulavathi, Bulandshahr, Neha Yadav moved the Court challenging a notification issued from the office of Assistant Development Officer showing two vacancies of members on account of two elected members (respondents no. 4 and 5) having tendered their resignations.
She claimed before the Court that mere submission of resignation by respondents no.4 and 5 will not result in vacancy unless the resignations are approved in the meeting of the Kshetra Panchayat.
It was further submitted that D.P.R.O. had sent communications to the Additional Chief Officer, Zila Panchayat for requisitioning a meeting of Zila Panchayat members for the purposes of accepting their resignations, and thus, it was contended that since the resignations have yet not been accepted, therefore, the notification of the vacancy is illegal.
In order to consider when the resignation of an elected member of a Kshettra Panchayat would be effective, the Court perused Section 11 of the Uttar Pradesh Kshettra Samitis and Zila Parishads Adhiniyam, 1961 [U.P. Act No. 33 of 1961] as amended by the Uttar Pradesh Panchayat Laws (Amendment) Act, 2007 [U.P. Act No. 44 of 2007] which reads thus:
"11. Resignation of Pramukh or member. - (1) A Pramukh, or any elected member of the Kshettra Panchayat may resign his office by writing under his hand addressed, in the case of Pramukh, to the Adhyaksha of the Zila Panchayat concerned, and in other cases to the Pramukh of the Kshettra Panchayat.
(2) The resignation of the Pramukh shall take effect on the from the date on which the sanction thereto of the Adhyaksh is received in the office of the Kshettra Samiti and the resignation of member shall take effect on and from the date on which the notice is received in the office of the Kshettra 4 Samiti and such Pramukh or the member shall be deemed to have vacated his office."
In view of this, the Court observed that as per Section 11(2) of the 1961 act, a member shall be deemed to have vacated his office from the date on which notice of his resignation is received in the office of Kshetra Panchayat.
"The vacancy becomes effective from a date envisaged under the deeming provision engrafted in the statute. It thus becomes operative by operation of law from the date notice is received in the office of the Kshetra Panchayat. Unlike in case of Pramukh, the resignation to become effective, in case of a member, does not require any approval," the Court added.
Consequently, observing that the notices of resignation were received in the office of Kshetra Panchayat on 5.04.2022 and 26.4.2022, respectively and thus, there was no illegality in the impugned notification, the Court dismissed the appeal.
Case title - Neha Yadav v. State Of U.P. And 4 Others [WRIT - C No. - 20091 of 2022]
Case Citation: 2022 LiveLaw (AB) 368