Development projects regularly being stalled by the moral code of conduct in the time of election, was the reason the Group of Ministers were using to curb the powers of the Election Commission.
“The Chairman was (also) of the view (at the September 30 meeting of the GoM) that ‘Code of Conduct’ was one of the biggest excuses to stall development projects, and thus agreed with the request of the Law Minister to flag this issue and its inclusion in the agenda papers,” The Indian Express reported today.
Ministers including Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee had denied any attempt to muzzle the Election Commission’s powers.
However, the note, which has been published in the report states otherwise.
“It was also suggested that the Legislative Department may also look into the aspects where executive instructions of the Election Commission of India were required to be given statutory shape,” the report stated.
Chief Election Commissioner SY Qureshi had said that the move could have been aimed at curbing the powers of the Election Commission.
If the move would be approved it would take complaints pertaining to violations of the moral code of conduct out the purview of the Election Commission. The violations would then have to be handled by courts.
Two Congress ministers were pulled up by the Election Commission during the UP elections for comments they made violating the code of coduct.