This editorial is based on the article “Act Now, Recast the Selection Process Of The ECs” published in ‘The Hindu’ on 13/01/2022. In this, the issues related to the appointment of the members of the Election Commission of India (ECI) have been discussed.
Election Commission of India (Election Commission of India- ECI) is a constitutional body whose vision is enshrined in the Constitution of India. As a body upholding the values of equality, justice, fairness, liberty and the rule of law in respect of superintendence, direction and control of electoral governance Has been.
its establishment Elections adhering to the highest standards of credibility, independence, fairness, transparency, integrity, accountability, autonomy and professional competence was made to organize
However, over the years, the ECI has faced several allegations regarding its independence and impartiality in electoral governance and the process of appointment of its members.
It appears that for better functioning of ECI, its Need for a more transparent and independent approach in the appointment of members which is also free from any effective participatory role of the executive.
Member of Election Commission of India
- Constitutional Provisions: Of the Indian Constitution PART XV It deals with elections and provides for the establishment of the Election Commission of India.
- enshrined in the constitution Article 324329 contains provisions related to the powers, functions, tenure, eligibility etc. of the Commission and its members.
- statutory provision: Originally there was only one Election Commissioner in the Commission, but Election Commissioner Amendment Act 1989 It has been made a multi-member body after the enactment of
- Role of Parliament: With ECIAppointment of cadets by the President of India Based on the recommendations made by the Prime Minister Is performed.
- However, Article 324 (2) It is provided in Power to make Acts regarding appointment of Election Commissioners (EC) of Parliament holds.
- Recommendations regarding appointment of Election Commissioners: In the year 1975, Justice Tarkunde Committee recommended that Appointment of election commissioners on the advice of a committee which should include the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha and the Chief Justice of India.
- Dinesh Goswami Committee in the year 1990 and in the year 2015 law commission He also recommended the same.
- Second Administrative Reforms Commission (ARCs) Fourth Report (2007) further recommended that The Law Minister and the Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha shall also be included in such collegium making such appointments. Let’s do.
- Failure of Parliament in Law Enactment: Parliament is responsible for making laws regarding the appointment of Election Commissioners.
- But in the year 1989, apart from the creation of a law (through which the number of Election Commissioners was increased from one to three), the Parliament No change in recruitment process till now has done.
- Excessive dependence on the executive for appointments: The Election Commission also performs a quasi-judicial role between the ruling party and other parties. In this scenario the election The executive should not be the sole participant in the appointment of commissioners.
- Present practice of appointment of Election Commissioners by the Center Article 14, Article 324(2) and of democracy basic structure of the constitution as a violation does.
- Multi-Institutional Committee: Since Election Commission of India Arching stone holding the building of Indian democracy The perceived and actual independence of the ECI can be enhanced by setting up a multi-institutional, bipartisan committee for fair and transparent selection of Election Commissioners.
- functions of the election commission quasi-judicial nature makes it particularly important that Recruitment process should be in line with rigid democratic principles।
- Chief Information Commissioner, Lokpal, Vigilance Commissioner And Central Bureau of Investigation Such a process already exists in respect of appointment of authorities like directors of the
- Recommendations of the Second Administrative Reforms Commission Report: It has recommended that for the appointment of the members of the Election Commission of India one headed by the Prime Minister collegium There should be one who sends recommendations to the President.
- Anoop Barnwal Vs Union of India (2015) The case also reinforced the demand for a collegium system for the Election Commission.
- Chief Justice J.S. Khehar And Justice D.Y. Chandrachud A bench of the Supreme Court had also taken note that the Election Commissioners superintend and conduct elections across the country and their selection should be done in the most transparent manner.
- Role of Parliament: Parliament moving forward and Creation of a law establishing a multi-institutional, bipartisan collegium for the selection of election commissioners Taxes can play an important role in avoiding the situation of judicial strictures.
- On the issue of independence of the ECI Need for debate and discussion in Parliament And after that necessary laws should be passed.
- Separation of powers is the gold standard for governments across the world and India should not lag behind on this standard either.
There is a need for a fair and transparent recruitment process to discharge the constitutional responsibilities of the ECI which is beyond condemnation and will reaffirm the trust of the people in this important pillar of Indian politics. The current cover over the process of appointment of Election Commissioners substantially undermines the very framework on which India’s democratic aspirations rest.
custom question: “There is a need to remove the deficiencies prevalent in the present system of appointment of Election Commissioners and adequate safeguards should be put in place to ensure that only ethical and competent people occupy the respective posts.” Comment.