Rejecting the government move to bring model code of conduct under ambit of a law, VS Sampath, new chief election commissioner said the present system should not be changed.
As of now, the model code of conduct is voluntarily agreed by all political parties with Election Commission having quasi-judicial powers to enforce it.
"The view of the Election Commission has always been that Model Code is an effective instrument in the hands of Election Commission in election management. Anything that anyone wants to do will be certainly part of a larger public debate," he told reporters after assuming office.
Sampath replaced SY Quraishi, who tenured ended on Saturday.
The commission had been of the view that providing statutory backing to the code will dent the powers of the commission to enforce it effectively during elections. Providing statutory backing would mean that the final decision on any complaint of violation will come after a long judicial process.
Sampath, however, parried questions on the sensitive issue of a collegium (a group of eminent persons) appointing the Election Commissioners and said he was concentrating on the work at hand.
The 18th election commissioner felt that electoral reforms were being pursued by the government and they were at the "last mile stage. "The commission will strive for its early implementation,” he said.