Electoral Reforms In India

EC unlikely to reiterate demand for contempt powers


Mains Paper 2: Polity | Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: Contempt of Courts Act

Mains level: Powers available to Election commission through various provisions

Demand for contempt power by EC

  1. The Election Commission is unlikely to reiterate its demand for powers to initiate contempt proceedings
  2. This was to be done against people and parties for making allegations against it without credible evidence


  1. In a letter in April, the Commission had urged the law ministry to amend the election laws so that it could use the ‘Contempt of Courts’ Act against such parties
  2. It had pointed out that several election management bodies, including those in Kenya and Pakistan, have “direct powers” to initiate contempt proceedings

Government refusal for granting any such power

  1. Government has told the poll panel that it won’t be appropriate to grant contempt powers
  2. It may be inconsistent with the law laid down by the Supreme Court
  3. The government had recently told Parliament that the EC’s demand was examined from legal and constitutional angles
  4. The Law Ministry had also taken into account judicial pronouncements in this regard
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