House panel: Reduce EC's model code of conduct duration | delhi | Hindustan Times
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House panel: Reduce EC's model code of conduct duration

delhi Updated: Aug 27, 2013 01:29 IST
HT Correspondent

A parliamentary panel on Monday recommended a three-week reduction in the enforcement of the model code of conduct by the election commission during the time of elections, saying it paralyses the functioning of governments.

"The model code of conduct is enforced from the date of declaration of elections by the EC and the period between announcement of elections and date of notification invariably exceeds three weeks," stated the report of the parliamentary standing committee on law and justice.

Panel chairman and Congress leader Shantaram Naik said: "It has been observed that most of the state governments are under the spell of paralysis during the period when this code is in force and all developmental works come to a halt."

The panel has also recommended that the model code of conduct be given the force of law by making it a part of the Representation of People's Act, though it has sought to take away certain powers vested with the EC like de-recognising a political party.

It has asked for a revision in the election expenditure limit for candidates to make it more realistic and for setting up of fast-track courts to dispose of election disputes within a period of 12 months.

"Nobody authorised the EC to create a law... It can only interpret a law and point it out. This concept has to be remembered," Naik said, pointing out to the powers vested with the poll panel under Article 324 of Constitution.

The committee said persons other than members of Parliament should not be given powers to make application to disqualify an MLA or an MP and recommended reconsideration of different criteria provided to nominated and independent members under Tenth Schedule to join any political party in the same manner as in the case of nominated members.