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Sunday, 16 October 2011

Right to recall unworkable in India: Chief Election Commissioner

New Delhi: Chief Election Commissioner S.Y. Quraishi Sunday said the right to reject or the right to recall non-performing members of parliament may not work in a large country like India.

The observation follows Prime Minister Manmohan Singh writing to Anna Hazare that the government will take up electoral reforms.

"Our main fear is that if we start rejecting all the candidates, we will have another election and people already complain of election fatigue," Quraishi told CNN-IBN news channel.

Opposing the proposal for the right to recall, as in many developed countries, Quraishi said it will "destabilise" the country, especially in areas where "people already feel alienated".

On the idea of introducing a clause on the right to reject, Quraishi said even though the EC has supported introduction of a rule 49-O button in EVMs for voters to express their displeasure over candidates, the proposal will lead to more frequent elections.

Rule 49-O of The Conduct of Elections Rules describes the procedure to be followed when a valid voter decides not to cast his vote, and chooses to record this fact.

Anna Hazare has said if all candidates spending crores in elections are rejected by the voters, it will discourage them from overspending and would control election expenditure.

Quraishi said he will meet Hazare this month on the issue.


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