KARUNATHILAKA AND ANOTHER v. DAYANANDA DISSANAYAKE, COMMISSIONER OF ELECTIONS AND OTHERS | 1999 1SLR 157

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The period of office of the Central, Uva, North-Central, Western and Sabaragamuwa
Provincial Councils came to an end in June, 1998. The Commissioner of Elections
(the 1st respondent) fixed the nomination period in terms of section 10 of the
Provincial Councils Elections Act, No. 2 of 1988. After the receipt of nominations
which concluded on 15.07.1998 each returning officer fixed 28.8.98 as the date
of the poll by a notice under section 22 (1) of the Act. The issue of postal ballot
papers in terms of section 24 of the Act read with Regulation 10 of the second
schedule to the Act was fixed for 4.8.98. But by telegram dated 3.8.98, the
respective returning officers suspended the postal voting without adducing any
reason therefore. The very next day on 4.8.98 the President issued a Proclamation
under section 2 of the Public Security Ordinance (PSO) bringing the provisions
of Part II of the Ordinance into operation throughout Sri Lanka and made an
Emergency Regulation under section 5 which had the legal effect of cancelling
the date of the poll. Thereafter, the 1st respondent took no steps to fix a fresh
date for the poll in terms of section 22 (6) of the Act, even after 28.8.98. In the
meantime the term of office of the North-Western Provincial Council came to an
end and the date of the poll for that Council was fixed for 25.1.99.

Read the full judgement here

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