SC Wants Law On Appointment Of Election Commissioners

A day after appointment of AK Jyoti as new Chief Election Commissioner, the top court wants to know why no law has so far been enacted on appointment of Election Commissioners.

New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Wednesday expressed concern over absence of any law on appointment of Election Commissioners and the Chief Election Commissioner of India. The apex court’s observation comes a day after the Central Government appointed Achal Kumar Jyoti as the new Chief Election Commissioner.

A two-member bench headed by Chief Justice JS Khehar and DY Chandrachud was hearing a plea seeking constitution of a committee comprising the Leader of Opposition and Chief Justice of India for appointment of Election Commissioners. The petition sought that the government enact a law to ensure a fair and transparent process in selection of these functionaries, while suggesting that appointees be persons who are neutral to all political parties.

The top court observed that Article 324 of the Constitution mandates that appointments to Election Commission be done as per the enabling law. However, there was no law in force governing these appointments. The apex court asked the Centre as to what steps it will be taking in this regard.

Pointing to Centre’s response saying that “competent people were appointed in a timely manner”, the bench told Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar that this was the only submission of the government. If no law was made by the Parliament in this regard, the apex court will take up the issue judicially, the bench stated.

The matter will be taken up for further hearing after two months.

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