Voice from the Rooftop

Blog of Vincent Augustine D'Souza

Election Commission and IIDEM

Article 324 of the constitution of India vests superintendence, direction and control of elections in Election Commission. The constitution does not give to Election Commission power to set up institutes.

Election Commission wants to set up India International Institute of Democracy and Election Management (IIDEM) as an advance resource centre of research and training in election management. Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) would be the ex-officio chairperson of IIDEM. Election Commission wants to tell the whole world about its success.

What success is Election Commission talking about? In most countries elections are held on a single day all over the country. In India they used to be held on two days at national level with a gap of two days in between. Thus, if in some constituencies election was on 24 March in other constituencies it was on 27 March. State elections used to be on a single day. Now national and many state elections have up to seven phases. When polling in some constituencies is over, filing of nomination begins is some constituencies. Election Commission knows it has not been successful in curbing black money in elections.

IIDEM is unnecessary and money should not be wasted on it. Once an institute is set up it is difficult to shut it down. India has many institutes which do not serve any useful purpose. We should not add one more to it. The world knows about India, as India knows about the world. India is more of a mobocracy and quotocracy than democracy. When India protests to foreign countries about some comments in some TV shows it sends a negative signal about India’s democracy. Those who want to go to foreign countries should spend their money and people’s money. The country has conducted elections without IIDEM. There is no need of any research and training in election management.

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  1. Sensible thoughts, Vincent. The EC must not squander public money on beating its own drum. I also agree with a number of your other blog posts. I don’t know if you’ve checked my work, pl.do so – blog linked above. I’ll keep a watch on your work.

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