ELECTION COMMISSION OF INDIA (ECI)
Election Commission of India is a Constitutional Body under Article 324 of the Constitution. The main responsibility of ECI is to perform free and fair elections of—
1) President of India
2) Vice President of India
3) Lok Sabha
4) Rajya Sabha
5) State Legislative Assemblies &
6) State Legislative Councils
Note: Elections of Panchayati Raj Institutions (such as Gram Panchayat, Block Smiti, Zila Parishad etc.) & Urban local bodies (such as Nagar Nigam, Nagar Palika, Cantonment Board, Nagar Parishad etc are conducted by state Election Commissions and not by Election Commission of India).
Election Commission was formed on 25th January, 1950. (25th January is also celebrated as National Voters Day).
Election Commission operates under the authority of Constitution as per Article 324 and subsequently enacted “Representation of the People Act”.
Till 1989, Election Commission used to be a Single Member Commission but during the V.P. Singh government, it was made a Multimember Commission (3 member Commission) with Chief Election Commissioner as its head and two Election Commissioners.
Sh. Sukumar Sen was First Election Commissioner and presently Sushil Chandra is 24th Chief Election Commissioner. A woman Ms. Rama Devi has also held this post.
CEC and ECs are appointed by President for a tenure of Six years or up to the age of 65 years whichever is earlier. Senior All India Service officers/Central Services officers are appointed on these posts.
Tenure of CEC is fixed i.e. he can’t be removed before completion of his tenure except his removal by Parliament by passing removal motion against him.
Elections Commissioners can be removed by President on recommendation of CEC but President is not bound to accept the recommendation of CEC.
The rank of CEC is equal to the rank of a judge of Supreme Court and is paid salary and allowances as per as a Judge of Supreme Court.
Election Commission prepare voters list, regularly update voters list, appoint returning officers, presiding officers and other staff to conduct free & fair elections, set elections schedule, fix legal expenditure limit by the Candidates. Present expenditure limit by a candidate in Lok Sabha elections is Rs. 59.4 Lakh to 77 Lakh and in Vidhan Sabha elections is Rs. 22 Lakh to 30.8 Lakh (Expenditure limit differs from State to State in Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha elections). Minimum of 14 days time (earlier 21 days) is given to candidates for canvassing. Election Commission register political parties as unrecognised Political Party, Recognised State Party and Recognised National Party. Election Commission can also derecognise a political party.
The winner were Allies Powers. 2ndworld war too witnessed huge loss of lives & property. Millions of people died and crores of people either fled to other countries or lost their homes. As League of Nations ceased to exists with the start of 2nd world war, again need was felt to establish an INTERNATIONAL ORGANISATION to prevent another world war. This gave birth to UNITED NATIONS ORGANISATION (UNO).
i) In 2009, CEC Gopalswami recommended removal of EC Naveen Chawla to the President but President Mrs. Pratibha Devi Singh Patil refused to accept the recommendation of CEC. In fact, after the retirement of Gopalswami, Naveen Chawla was appointed as CEC.
(ii) Right to vote is a Constitutional Right under Article 326.
(iii) Voting age was reduced from 21 years to 18 years by 61st CAA 1989 during Rajiv Gandhi government
(iv) If a Candidate secures less than 1/6 of valid votes, his security deposited is forfeited.