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  • Category: India

    Can India ponder upon the idea of a permanent bureaucracy for election commission?

    Do you think India should have a permanent bureaucracy for the election commission? Discuss the pros and cons of such a step.

    Indian elections have long been having some issues. Poor voting percentage, Bogus voting, Cash for votes scams, Booth capturing to name a few. Of course, societal change is required. But even Institutionally we have a problem with ad hoc preparations for elections. Election officials are drawn from various departments during election alone and they have to report back duty in their parent department once election works are over. This process has a lot of problems.

    1. In party dominated political situation of India officials once returning to their department have to deal with the same candidates as political masters whom they once regulated during elections. This consideration during elections greatly affects the neutrality of officials. we can see even officials vertically split between ruling and opposition parties in various states.
    2. Election process involves voter registration, correction, transposition of entries and many other works apart from main election process. These are as important as the election process itself. when officials are drawn from other department they consider it as additional burden as it is not their area of expertise.
    3. Even during elections in addition to election works the entire administration falls under the hands of permanent executives. In sensitive department like revenue this seriously affects their works as many files are kept in pending during election time. This greatly affects administrative efficiency.
    ...And more and more.

    Considering the above facts, must we ponder upon the Idea of having a permanent bureaucracy for the election commission, a constitutional office. And of course, their work is in no way inferior to other department works.
  • #652484
    Yes, there are lots of problems in the present system of bureaucrats being assigned to the Election Commission before the elections. But India is still not in a position to develop a separate cadre/service exclusively for the Election Commission.
    "If you are killed in action, you go to Heaven. If you win, you rule this Earth (as beautiful as Heaven). That is why, O son of Kunti, take a firm resolve and fight!"-- Shrimad Bhagwad Gita

  • #652492
    I agree with the author that the present system of deputing officials from other departments for elections works for a limited time period is causing real problems. But what is the solution? I feel it is impossible to have so many officials and staff in the Election commission which will become very heavy for the government. Ultimately the taxpayer has to compensate it from the money he earned from his toil. So I think it is a very difficult proposition to have a separate cadre for the election commission exclusively. I think it is not a viable alternative.
    What I feel is the officials in government departments from one state can be deputed to another state so that the problems of dealing with the same people after the elections will not be there. Of course, the government has to pay a little more money towards their TA and DA. But it will be a better option than having a permanent staff.
    There are Corporates which are very big and the government can think of hiring the officials from these companies with an undertaking that if they go for any unethical practices they will lose their present job and their name and position will be published in the Gazette informing all the corporates not to employ them for any post.
    I don't know how far my suggestion will be useful and I wait for the comments of other people on this subject.

    always confident

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