IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


21st November, 2022 Polity and Governance

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In News

  • Arun Goel has been appointed as the Election Commissioner by the President.
  • He recently took voluntary retirement from the post of secretary of the Union Ministry of Heavy Industries.


Appointment of Election Commissioner

  • The President appoints Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners.
  • Tenure of 6 years, or up to 65 years of age, whichever is earlier.
  • The status, salary and perks of election commissioners are equivalent to Judges of the Supreme Court of India.
  • The Chief Election Commissioner can be removed from office only through impeachment by Parliament.
    • The President can remove other members in consultation with the Chief Election Commissioner.
  • The President may appoint Regional Election Commissioners in consultation with the CEC before elections to the Parliament or Assemblies.
  • The Chief Election Commissioner cannot hold any office of profit after retirement.
  • The Chief Election Commissioner cannot be reappointed to the post.


Election Commission of India

  • It is a permanent constitutional body.
  • Article 324 of the constitution establishes the Election Commission of India.
  • It was established on 25th January 1950.
  • It supervises the conduct of elections to Parliament and Legislature of every State and elections to the offices of President and Vice-President of India.
  • It consists of the Chief Election Commissioner and two Election Commissioners.
    • Originally, there was only Chief Election Commissioner, there were no Election Commissioners.


Powers of the Election Commission

  • The EC enjoys complete autonomy and is insulated from any interference from the Executive.
  • It also functions as a quasi-judicial body regarding matters related to elections and electoral disputes.
  • Its recommendations are binding on the President of India.
  • However, its decisions are subject to judicial review by High Courts and the Supreme Court acting on electoral petitions.
  • During the election process, the entire Central and state government machinery (including paramilitary and police forces) is deemed to be on deputation to the Commission.
  • The Commission takes effective control of government personnel and movable and immovable property for the successful conduct of elections.

Functions of the Election Commission

  • Demarcation of constituencies.
  • Preparation of electoral rolls.
  • Issue notification of election dates and schedules.
  • Establish and enforce a code of conduct.
  • Scrutiny of nomination papers of candidates.
  • Scrutiny of election expenses.
  • Allot symbols and accord recognition to political parties.
  • Render advice to the President and Governors regarding the disqualification of MPs and MLAs.
  • Allot schedules for broadcast and telecast of party campaigns.
  • Grant exemptions to persons from disqualifications imposed by judicial decisions.