Political Affairs Current Affairs - 2019

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SC issue notices to Centre, ECI to bring political parties under RTI Act

Supreme Court issued notices to the Union Government, Election Commission of India (ECI) on a plea to bring all political parties under the ambit of Right to Information (RTI) Act, 2005.

The notice was also issued to six National Political Parties viz. BJP, Congress, CPI, BSP, CPI (M) and NCP.

It was issued by 3 member SC bench headed by Chief Justice HL Dattu on the Public Interest Litigation (PIL) filed by an NGO, Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR). The bench comprised of Justice Arun Kumar Mishra and Justice Amitava Roy .

In the PIL, the NGO had sought

  • Transparency and accountability in functioning of political parties.
  • Political parties should be more transparent in their working and accountable towards citizens as they play an important role in the formation of government, policy decisions and enactment of laws.
  • Compulsion on the political parties to declare all donations below 20,000 rupees.

The petition was filed in SC after the Central Information Commission (CIC) failed to bring the National Political Parties as Public Authority under Section 2(h) of the RTI Act. Earlier. CIC in its detailed order had declared that the Political Parties are public authorities and hence should disclose the information under RTI Act.

BJP wins assembly elections in Maharashtra and Haryana

The BJP has performed well in the first test of its popularity after the parliamentary elections. It looks set to form the government in both states.

Haryana-Maharashtra-Election-Results-2014Maharashtra Assembly Elections

With strong campaigning by the PM, the BJP won 122 seats in Maharashtra, which is almost three times the number of seats it won in the 2009 elections. However, the seats are still not enough for the BJP to solely for a government, as it falls 22 seats short of the halfway mark. The party which wishes to form the government must have a minimum of 145 seats in the 288 member Maharashtra assembly.

The NCP won 41 seats and announced that it was willing to provide unconditional support to the BJP from the outside. The Shiv Sena won 63 seats. The Congress emerged as the third largest party in the House, after BJP and Shiv Sena, winning 42 seats. Raj Thackeray’s MNS (Maharashtra Navnirman Sena) won just one seat. MNS won from only Junnar which is in Pune district. In the earlier elections, MNS has won 13 seats.

BJP’s Maharashtra unit President, Devendra Phadnavis, seems to be the most likely candidate for the Chief Minister’s post. He is from the Vidarbha region, where the BJP won 40 seats.

Haryana Assembly Elections

Haryana’s Legislative Assembly has 90 seats. Of this, BJP gained the clear majority by winning 47 seats. Haryana voters have been voting for Congress since 2005, when Bhupinder Hooda became CM. The party with the second largest seats is the INLD (Indian National Lok Dal) with 19 seats. Congress won 15 seats this year, a far lesser number than the 40 seats it won in 2009. As for the other parties, Haryana Janhit Congress (BL), Shiromani Akali Dal and BSP won 2, 1 and 1 seats respectively. Independent candidates cornered 5 seats.