The Supreme Court will hear a plea asking for reforms in the process for appointing members of the electoral commission on November 17, 2022



A Constitution bench of the Supreme Court on Thursday decided to hear petitions recommending reform in the process of appointing members of the Election Commission of India and some additional suggestions, November 17, 2022.

Counsel, Mr Prashant Bhushan, appearing on behalf of the Petition in the main case, briefed the Panel comprising Judges KM Joseph, Ajay Rastogi, Aniruddha Bose, Hrishikesh Roy and CT Ravikumar that the government currently appoints the members of the ECI. He argued that given the fact that ICE’is supposed to be a neutral organization, the petitioner suggests that the committee consisting of the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition and the Chief Justice of India, which is constituted for the selection of the Director of the Central Bureau of Investigation, may also be entrusted with the selection members of the ECI. Mr. Bhushan added that the reports of various commissions also make the same or a similar recommendation. It has been claimed that even the Constitution provides that the appointment would be with the President until a law on the matter is put in place. He said that in the Constituent Assembly, Dr Ambedkar had said that it was not appropriate to leave the appointment of ICT members to the government.

Lead Counsel, Mr. Gopal Sankaranarayanan, appearing on behalf of the petitioner, Attorney Ashwini Upadhyay, in the related case, argued that his client raised three additional issues – protection given to Election Commissioners other than the Chief Election Commissioner of India; secretariat dedicated to the electoral commission; its drawdown being on the consolidated fund.

Mr. Bhushan informed the Chamber that another similar motion was filed recently. But in view of the fact that interim measures were requested, said request was not tagged with this batch.

As a hearing date for the case was being set, Mr Sankaranarayanan informed the bench that in the Supreme Court’s latest order, the Attorney General had been asked to assist in the case. . Considering the same, its convenience can also be sought. The Solicitor General argued that the Attorney General asked ASG, Balbir Singh and the SG to assist the Court.

The case was returned to the Apex Court as an Apex Court division bench was of the opinion that ‘careful consideration and interpretation of the provisions of Section 324 of the Constitution of India‘, which stipulates that the supervision, direction and control of the elections must be devolved to the electoral commission, may be necessary.

[Case Status: Anoop Baranwal v. Union of India WP(C) No. 104/2015]

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