Election Commission Current Affairs - 2020

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ECI launches National Electoral Roll Purification 2016

The Election Commission of India (ECI) has launched National Electoral Roll Purification (NERP) 2016 across the country. The 2016 motto of the ECI is “No voter to be left behind”.

The NERP 2016 programme aims to improve health of electoral rolls (ERs) and optimize the polling station (PS) location and area. Besides, it also seeks to correct errors in electoral rolls and enrolment of all eligible citizens, among other things.

The twin objectives of NERP 2016

Improving Health of ERs by-inclusion of all eligible citizens in mission mode

  • Electoral rolls (ERs) to be made Free from errors
  • Every eligible elector will have single ER entry with unique Elector Photo Identity Card (EPIC) number.
  • All Absent (A)/ Dead (D)/ Shifted (S) electors entries and Repeat Entries (REs) will be removed.
  • Provide every elector with Photo Electoral Rolls (PERs) with good quality correct images confirming to ECI standards.

Standardization of Sections, PS boundaries & Location and improved PS map by

  • Polling station (PS) boundaries will be optimized with standardization of sections using GIS technology.
  • PS will be relocated with in Part or in adjacent parts and Improved PS Map with part map showing directions to reach PS will be provided.
  • PS building image and dimensioned PS room drawing with Basic Minimum facilities (BMF) details will be provided.

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EC wants law amended to empower it to postpone, cancel polls

The Election Commission (EC) has urged the Union Government to amend the electoral law Representation of the People Act (RPA), 1951 to empower it to either postpone or countermand elections if evidence emerges of use of money to influence voters.

In this regard, EC has asked Union Government to insert a new clause ‘58 B’ in the RPA, 1951 to allow adjournment or countermanding (declaring invalid) of election on the grounds of use of money power (bribery) in the affected polling areas. The provision would also empower the EC to re-schedule the elections in such areas.

Present Scenario

At present, Clause 58A of RPA empowers EC to cancel polls only if there is an evidence of use of muscle power or booth-capturing to influence votes to change outcome of elections.

However in recent time, candidates and political parties are allegedly doling out cash and giving freebies (gifts) to woo the electorate

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