Electoral reforms of 1996

Q.  Which of the following were electoral reforms of 1996?

1) Listing of Names of Candidates.
2) Prohibitions of Arms.
3) Prohibition of sale of liquor.

- Published on 17 Mar 17

a. 1, 2
b. 1, 3
c. 2, 3
d. All of the above

ANSWER: All of the above
  • Electoral Reforms of 1996 -

  • In 1990, the National Front Government headed by V. P. Singh appointed Dinesh Goswami Committee on electoral reforms.

  • Some of these recommendations were implemented in 1996.

  • Listing of Names of Candidates -

    The candidates contesting elections are to be classified into three lists -

    1. Candidates of recognised political parties.

    2. Candidates of registered-unrecognised political parties.

    3. Other (independent) candidates.

  • Their names in the ballot papers have to appear separately in the above order.

  • In each category these have to be arranged in the alphabetical order.

  • Disqualification for Insulting the National Honour Act -

    A person who is convicted for the following offences under the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act of 1971 is disqualified to contest in the elections to the Parliament and state legislature for 6 years -

    1. Offence of insulting the National Flag.

    2. Offence of insulting the Constitution of India.

    3. Offence of preventing the singing of National Anthem.

    Prohibition on the Sale of Liquor -

  • No liquor or other intoxicants are to be sold or given or distributed at any shop, eating place, hotel or any other place whether public or private within a polling area during the period of 48 hours ending with the hour fixed for the conclusion of poll.

  • Any person who violates this rule is to be punished with imprisonment up to 6 months or with fine up to Rs. 2,000 or with both.

  • Number of Proposers -

  • The nomination of a candidate in a Parliamentary or assembly constituency should be subscribed by 10 registered electors of the constituency as proposers, if the candidate is not sponsored by a recognized political party.

  • In the case of a candidate sponsored by a recognized political party, only one proposer is required.

  • This was to discourage non-serious people from contesting elections.

  • Death of a Candidate -

  • Earlier, in case of death of a contesting candidate before the actual polling, the election used to be countermanded and the election process used to start all over again in the concerned constituency.

  • Now, the election would not be countermanded.

  • If the deceased candidate belonged to a recognised political party, the party concerned would be given an option to propose another candidate within seven days.

  • Time Limit for By-Elections -

  • Now, by-elections are to be held within six months of occurrence of the vacancy in any House of Parliament or a State Legislature.

  • But, this condition is not applicable in two cases -

    1. where the remainder of the term of the member whose vacancy is to be filled is less than one year; or

    2. when the Election Commission in consultation with the Central Government, certifies that it is difficult to hold the by-elections within the said period.

    Holiday to Employees on the Polling Day -

  • The registered voters employed in any trade, business, industry or any other establishments are entitled to a paid holiday on the polling day.

  • This rule applies even to the daily wagers.

  • Any employer who violates this rule is to be punished with a fine up to Rs. 500.

  • However, this rule is not applicable in the case of a voter whose absence may cause danger or substantial loss in respect of the employment in which he is engaged.

  • Contestants Restricted to Two Constituencies -

  • A candidate would not be eligible to contest from more than two Parliamentary or assembly constituencies at a general election or at the by-elections which are held simultaneously.

  • Similar restrictions are imposed for biennial elections and by-elections to the Rajya Sabha and the State Legislative Councils.

  • Prohibition of Arms -

  • Entering into the vicinity of a polling station with any kind of arms is to be considered a cognizable offence, punishable with imprisonment of up to two years or with fine or with both. Further, the arms are to be confiscated and the related license is to be cancelled.

  • But, these provisions are not applicable to the returning officer, presiding officer, any police officer or any other person appointed to maintain peace and order at the polling station.

  • Effective Campaigning Period Reduced - The minimum gap between the last date for withdrawal of candidature and the polling date has been reduced from 20 to 14 days.

Post your comment / Share knowledge

Enter the code shown above:
(Note: If you cannot read the numbers in the above image, reload the page to generate a new one.)