EC defers by-polls for one Lok Sabha, 7 Assembly seats

New Delhi, July 23

The Election Commission has deferred by-elections for one Lok Sabha and 7 Assembly seats as a consequence of “some extraordinary circumstances peculiar to these constituencies”.

The ballot panel will meet on Friday to debate scheduling of those by-elections.

The states the place the by-polls have been deferred are Valmiki Nagar Lok Sabha seat in Bihar, two meeting seats every in Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh, and one every in Assam, Madhya Pradesh and Kerala.

Most of those seats fell vacant because of the demise of sitting members.

A senior Election Commission (EC) official mentioned the COVID-19 pandemic and the flood state of affairs have been two causes behind the choice.

As per the electoral regulation, EC has to carry bye-elections inside 180 days (six months) of a seat falling vacant, identified one other official.

The six-month deadline to carry by-elections in these eight seats was ending on totally different dates in July, August and September, respectively.

When the EC assessed the state of affairs, it discovered that it was tough to stick to the six-month deadline in these seats, and approached the Union Law Ministry to defer the polls, mentioned the official.

Under the Representation of the People Act, 1951, in sure circumstances, the EC, in session with the Central Government (the Union Law Ministry), certifies that it’s tough to carry the by-election throughout the six-month interval.

Using this provision, the ballot panel issued a certificates on July 22 to defer the elections on these eight seats.

In an announcement on Thursday, the Commission mentioned that “this matter of timing, etc. of by-elections is also slotted for discussion in the Election Commission meeting to be held tomorrow (Friday)”.

The assertion added that in all, by-elections have been due for 56 Assembly constituencies and one Lok Sabha seat.

However, a letter written by one among its senior officers to the Law Ministry relating to the eight by-polls was “causing some confusion”, the EC mentioned and clarified that it was solely “in respect of eight constituencies regarding which a reference to Ministry of Law and Justice was made … due to some extraordinary circumstances peculiar to these constituencies”.

Out of 57 by-elections, the Commission has already taken a call to carry remaining by-election as per provisions and the deferring of eight by-elections was solely as much as September 7, 2020, the assertion mentioned.

The remaining 49 by-polls are due after September 7. PTI

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