Lok Sabha elections 2019- Code of conduct to continue, says EC; CM Devendra Fadnavis wants it relaxed
The ECI, on February 25, 2017, revised its earlier order and directed the chief electoral officers (CEO) of all states to keep the MCC imposed until the entire election process was over.Updated: May 01, 2019, 06:43 IST
Contrary to the practice in place since 2009, the Election Commission of India (ECI) has decided to continue the Model Code of Conduct (MCC), until the counting of votes is completed on May 23. Since 2009, the ECI had been relaxing the MCC partially after the polling process in the state was over. Chief minister Devendra Fadnavis has now written to the ECI requesting it to lift the MCC as it affects the implementation of drought relief works.
The ECI, on February 25, 2017, revised its earlier order and directed the chief electoral officers (CEO) of all states to keep the MCC imposed until the entire election process was over. The Maharashtra government had expected the partial relaxation of the MCC after the fourth and final phase of polling in the state on Monday. However, Maharashtra’s CEO Ashwani Kumar has referred to the 2017 order and said the MCC will continue to be in place until May 23.
CM Fadnavis has written to the election body for relaxation of the MCC. “We have declared drought in villages in 151 tehsils and the relief works need to be taken up at the earliest. We are planning a cabinet meeting to review the situation. The MCC in place does not allow the government to take policy decisions, hold review meetings and issue tenders and it badly affects the mitigation process,” Fadnavis said in his letter.
When the MCC is in the force, the government cannot issue work orders and officials on poll duty cannot be allowed to participate in administrative works. The partial relaxation allows the government to go ahead with the administrative works though policy decisions affecting the polls in remaining phases are not allowed.
With the ECI deciding against lifting the MCC partially, the state government cannot even issue transfer orders of employees, a process needs to be completed before May 31 every year.
With the MCC continuing to be in force, Fadnavis has been allowed to hoist the flag on May 1, which is Maharashtra Day. Governor Ch Vidyasagar Rao’s speech has also been vetted by the poll body, said an official from the General Administration Department.