CEC bats for constitutional protection for his fellows

Arora said he "fully endorses" a recommendation of the Law Commission to extend constitutional protection, on the line of Chief Election Commissioner. to the two Election Commissioners. (PTI File Photo)

Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora has pitched for equal constitutional protection to all members of the Election Commission with regard to their removal. 

Arora said he "fully endorses" a recommendation of the Law Commission to extend constitutional protection, on the line of Chief Election Commissioner. to the two Election Commissioners.

"I endorse it. I fully endorse it," Arora told PTI in response to a question. He said it was up to the government to decide on the issue. 

The President appoints the Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners after the Law Ministry initiates the file for their appointment. 

A Chief Election Commissioner can be removed from the office only through impeachment by Parliament. The President can remove the ECs based on the recommendation of the CEC. 

In its report on electoral reforms submitted in March, 2015, the Law Commission had proposed extending constitutional protection to the two ECs. 

The EC had been pushing to extend constitutional protection to the election commissioners. 

The Law Ministry has maintained that the granting equal protection to the two ECs needed amendment to Constitution for which political unanimity was required. 

The Election Commission is a permanent Constitutional body which was established in accordance with the Constitution on January 25, 1950. 

Originally, the Commission had only a Chief Election Commissioner. It currently consists of Chief Election Commissioner and two Election Commissioners. 

For the first time, two additional Commissioners were appointed on October 16, 1989 but they had a very short tenure, till January 1, 1990. 

Later, on October 1, 1993 two additional Election Commissioners were appointed.

The concept of multi-member Commission has been in operation since then, with decision-making power by majority vote.

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CEC bats for constitutional protection for his fellows

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