Electoral Politics

Election Commission

You must have seen news headlines like “EC orders repoll in 398 districts”. So what does this EC stand for? Here, EC stands for the Election Commission of India. It is an independent body of office, made by the Constitution, that is mainly in charge of conducting elections in our country. Let us learn more about the Election Commision.

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History of the Election Commission

election commission

Article 324 of the Constitution of India set up the Election Commission as the main body to control and hold elections as an all-India commision. However, its also important to note that small elections within villages and towns aren’t under it. Instead, they are under a separate State Election Commission.

Composition of Election Commision

The Chief Election Commissioner is the head of the body.┬áThe body was set up in 1950 with only one officer – The Chief Election Commissioner, appointed by the President. But in 1993, it grew and also included two more election commissioners. They hold office for six years or till they are 65 years old, whichever is earlier. Yet, they can still step down from office or be removed anytime before that.

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How is it Independent?

The Constitution makes sure that the Election Commission remains an independent body that is not controlled by changing powers at the centre. It does so, by making sure that it is very difficult to remove them from office. Even their service conditions cannot be changed. This is very important so that free and fair elections can take place in India, without different political parties spoiling or interfering with the process.

Powers and Functions

election commision

There are three main types of powers of the Election Commision- to advise, to administer and quasi-judicial powers. Under the first type, it advises the President and the Governor regarding disqualifying members of Parliament and state assemblies. In the second type, the office marks areas for elections, makes electoral rolls, controls and oversees elections, etc. Finally, under quasi-judicial powers, the office also acts as a court for settling fights regarding recognition of political parties and their symbols.

Values of the Election Commision

The Election Commission is a body that stands for integrity and excellence. It follows some rules for its functioning. The most important is to uphold the Constitution and its ideas like equality, justice, fairness and rule of law.

It aims to hold elections with the highest standards of fairness. The Election Commission develops human skills, as well as the infrastructure needed for elections. It also spreads awareness about the importance of voting.

Election Commision strives to increase the participation of citizens in elections and also engages with political parties and their vision. Finally, the body has to adopt new technologies (like the recent electronic voting machines in news) and new methods for conducting elections well.

Solved Question for You

Q: What do you think is the vision and mission of the EC?

Answer: The vision of the Election Commission is to be a body with integrity that ensures full and fair participation in elections throughout India. Its mission is to ensure inclusive and ethical elections that upholds the true spirit of democratic India.

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