In letter to Law Minister, CEC Sunil Arora pushes for pending poll reforms

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  1. Chief Election Commissioner(CEC) has written a letter to the Law Minister.He has highlighting eight pending reform proposals.
  2. CEC has sought the government’s intervention in limiting the number of seats from which a candidate can contest polls to one.At present one candidate can contest from two seats.
  3. He has also asked the government to amend the Representation of the People(RP) Act to bring the print media within the purview of the 48-hour silence period before voting and extending tax exemptions only to political parties that fight elections.
  4. He also highlighted the proposal on making paid news and filing of false affidavit a corrupt practice with punishment of two years imprisonment.
  5. He has also flagged the apprehension that political parties may merely be set up for availing provisions of income tax exemption.He has reiterated ECs demand for powers to de-register a party. 
  6. At present,the RP Act only provides for registration of political parties but the EC has no power to revoke that registration.
  7. CEC has also sought changes in the contribution form (Form 24A) meant for political parties to ensure that they disclose information even for donations that are less than Rs 20,000.Currently,parties are obligated to provide details of contributions of more than Rs 20,000.
  8. CEC has also proposed four cut-off dates for voter enrolment in a calendar year namely on January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1. Currently,only those above 18 years as on January 1 are eligible to enrol themselves as voters in that particular year.