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SC's no to PIL seeking separate cadre for poll panel

SC’s no to PIL seeking separate cadre for poll panel

Supreme Court today refused to entertain a PIL seeking a direction for creating a “separate” and “permanent” cadre of officers for the Election Commission to conduct free and fair polls in the country.

A bench comprising Chief Justice T S Thakur and Justice A M Khanwilkar, however, asked lawyer Shiv Kumar Tripathi, who filed the PIL in his personal capacity, to approach the poll panel for redressal of his grievances.

The plea had also sought a direction to the poll panel and the Centre that the practice of availing services of government employees in Assembly and parliamentary elections be stopped as they were prone to support the government of the day.

It referred to the provisions of the Representation of the People Act which provides for appointment of officers as Chief Electoral Officers, District Election Officers, Electoral Registration Officers, Assistant Electoral Registration Officers.

“These officers have their affiliation and loyalty to the party ruling the Centre or the State Government and therefore, have the inherent favourable attitude towards these political parties who are at the helm of affairs at the Centre or in the States and obviously they are biased naturally towards the candidates who belong to political parties which are in power in the concerned States or the Centre,” it said.

Hence, there is need to create a separate cadre of officers who are permanently under the control and supervision of the Election Commission and are totally alien and separate from the authority of the government at the Centre and in the states, it said.

( Source – PTI )

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