Wednesday, Aug 17, 2022
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Can't Go The EC Way

The EC directive on electoral reforms revives the tussle between legislature and judiciary

Can't Go The EC Way
T. Narayan
Can't Go The EC Way
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53

So, it was no surprise last fortnight when the otherwise bitterly divided political class came together to oppose an Election Commission (EC) proposal on amending statutory rules and the format of nomination papers to be filed by candidates. The EC was executing a Supreme Court (SC) judgement of May 2 this year mandating candidates to disclose their criminal antecedents (if any), as also details of their financial and educational background. While the May 2 order was received sans much antagonism by the political class, the situation changed drastically by June 28 when the EC stepped in. While incorporating the court order in totality, the EC introduced certain new clauses for its implementation.

The main point of conflict is the provision that deals with the disqualification of candidates. While the SC in its judgement had made no mention of disqualification, the EC directive made it clear that non-furnishing of the affidavit, furnishing of any wrong or incomplete information or suppression of material information may result in the rejection of nomination papers. Simply put, while furnishing criminal records, poor educational qualifications or vast wealth may not invite rejection, refusing to provide details or providing incorrect information could.

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