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  • 06 February, 2023

  • 5 Min Read

Contesting Elections from 2 Constituencies

Contesting Elections from 2 Constituencies

A petition to prevent candidates from running in more than one constituency during the general or assembly elections was denied by the Supreme Court.

Why did the SC dismiss the petition?

Political democracy and parliamentary sovereignty were issues, according to the SC.

The issue is clearly of a "legislative nature" (Contesting Elections from 2 Constituencies).

A candidate may run in up to two constituencies for any election (parliamentary, state assembly, biennial council, or by-elections) under Section 33(7) of the Representation of People Act (RPA).

Prior to its introduction in 1996, there was no restriction on the number of constituencies a candidate could run in.

According to Section 70 of the RPA, if a person is elected to more than one seat in either House of Parliament or in either House of a State Legislature, all but one of the seats will become empty until he resigns within the allotted time.

Government's perspective on Section 33's legality (7)

  • The government holds that a candidate's right to run for office and the polity's ability to select candidates cannot be restricted by the law.
  • Before the amendment, candidates could run in as many constituencies as they wanted. According to the government, the law didn't need to be changed right away because the restriction to two constituencies was sensible enough.

Election Commission of India's (ECI) perspective on Section 33 (7)

  • The Supreme Court was notified by the EC in an affidavit in 2018 that it had recommended a change to Section 33(7) in 2004.
  • According to the EC, "when a person runs for office from two constituencies and wins from both, he must vacate one seat out of the two constituencies." Thus, a by-election from a single constituency would be necessary, resulting in needless expenses for the by-administration. election's
  • The EC had also recommended that a candidate deposit a sum of Rs10 lakh for a general election or 5 lahks for running in two constituencies. The sum would be used to pay for by-election expenses.

Source: The Hindu

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