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Why there is ruckus on the appointment of Election Commissioner, know how the selection is done and how long is the tenure

CEC Appointment Row: Just before every assembly and Lok Sabha elections to be held in the country, the debate about the Election Commission starts. The commission has always been under the scanner regarding the change in election dates and the code of conduct. Now the Supreme Court has also expressed its concern regarding the appointment of Election Commissioner in the Commission. The Supreme Court, while hearing the petitions, made several scathing comments on the appointment of the Election Commissioner ie CEC, after which the debate on this issue has started once again. In this election atmosphere, the opposition parties are trying hard to capitalize on this issue. Let us understand how the Election Commissioner is appointed and what is the whole controversy over it.

Why is there ruckus about the Election Commissioner?
Recently, a major appointment was announced by the President in the Election Commission. This appointment took place as the third commissioner of the Election Commission. In which Punjab cadre IAS officer Arun Goyal was appointed as Election Commissioner. This post was lying vacant for a long time. Now the question is why there was so much ruckus regarding his appointment.

These arguments were given in the Supreme Court
In fact, just a few days before the announcement of Arun Goyal’s name, he was given retirement. That is, he was working with the current government recently. Regarding this, a petition was filed in the Supreme Court and it was said that on what basis Goyal was appointed in the Election Commission after suddenly retiring? Senior advocate Prashant Bhushan, appearing for the petitioners, said in the Supreme Court that people who are already retired have been appointed as election commissioners. Goyal was given two or three days before retirement and immediately after that he started working as Election Commissioner. That is why an interim order should be passed against his appointment.

Strong comment of the Supreme Court
On the appointment of Arun Goyal, the Supreme Court asked for all the documents from the government, and also said that it would have been appropriate if this appointment was not made during the hearing of the case. After this, during the latest hearing of the case, the Supreme Court has asked the government why the junior most officer was selected among the four names sent by the Law Minister? The officer going to retire had taken VRS just before this. How suddenly the decision was taken in less than 24 hours?

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Not only this, earlier during the hearing of the case, the Supreme Court also took a jibe at the governments. The Supreme Court said that all the governments have completely abolished the independence of the Election Commission of India. While hearing the matter, a bench headed by Justice KM Joseph said, this is a very disturbing trend. After TN Seshan, the fallout over the appointment of the Election Commissioner began when no one was given a full term. This was done during the tenure of every government.

The government gave this answer
Now let us know the answer and logic of the present government on this whole controversy. The strict remarks of the Supreme Court were mentioned everywhere and the government was severely criticized. After this it was the turn of the government to answer. The government filed its reply in the Supreme Court and told that the central cabinet should not be distrusted only on the basis of a hypothetical situation. Even now only eligible people are being selected. On the appointment in 24 hours, the Attorney General replied that nothing wrong has happened in the process. Earlier also appointments were made in 12 to 24 hours.

What is Election Commission?
The Election Commission in India is an autonomous constitutional body. Whose job is to conduct elections for the states and the center. Apart from the Central Election Commission, the state also has its own election commission. Under the Central Election Commission conducts elections to the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, Legislative Assembly, Legislative Council, President and Vice President offices. At the same time, the State Election Commission does the work of conducting body or panchayat elections. Articles 324-329 defines election. It says that a commission should be formed which will conduct the elections.

Earlier, only one commissioner was appointed in the Election Commission, who used to take all the decisions related to the elections. After this, after amendment in 1989, it was made three-member. In which there is a Chief Election Commissioner i.e. Chief Election Commissioner and he is accompanied by two Election Commissioners. Everyone works together, but if any issue comes up on which a decision has to be taken by voting, then the decision is taken by a difference of two to one. That is, whatever the two commissioners agree on, that is the final decision. A similar decision was also taken on the complaint filed against PM Modi during the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. It was told then that a clean chit was given to PM Modi by a two-to-one majority.

How is the election commissioner appointed?
The Election Commissioner is appointed by the President after the recommendation of the Prime Minister and the Cabinet. It is generally seen that this recommendation gets the approval of the President. This is the reason why many times questions arise regarding this appointment. The Election Commissioner has a fixed tenure, in which retirement is given for 6 years or depending on his age. The maximum age given in this is 65 years. That is, if someone becomes the Election Commissioner at the age of 62, then he will have to leave this post after three years. The Election Commissioner can resign before the tenure and can also be removed. Parliament has the power to remove them. The Election Commissioner is given the same salary and allowances as the judges of the Supreme Court.

Overall, the Supreme Court has asked the government to change the process of appointing the Election Commissioner. The court said that if there is a deficiency in the existing system, then there is a need for change and improvement in it. The Supreme Court made a big comment and said that in this era, there is a need for such a commissioner, who can take action impartially if he receives a complaint against any big leader, even the PM. However, at present the government is not in the mood for any kind of change.

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