Rajya Sabha passes Electoral Law (Amendment) Bill, 2021

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admin December 21, 2021
Updated 2021/12/21 at 2:56 PM

The Rajya Sabha passed a bill to integrate electoral register data with the Aadhaar ecosystem by voice voting, despite the opposition’s walkout.

The Election Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2021, was passed by the Lok Sabha on Monday, with the goal of removing fraudulent voters from the electoral lists.

Because their proposal to refer the Bill to a select committee was rejected by voice vote, the opposition parties demanded a division of votes.

While Deputy Chairman Harivansh encouraged members to return to their places, Trinamool Congress member Derek O’Brien invoked regulations for a vote split.

Opposition members, on the other hand, continued to shout slogans in the well. Mr. O’Brien stormed out after throwing the rule book on the table where the authorities sat.

Derek O’Brien’s actions were harshly criticised by members of the ruling party.

Members of Congress, TMC, Left parties, DMK, and NCP also protested in the House.

The Bill was backed by members of the BJP, JD(U), YSRCP, AIADMK, BJD, and TMC-M, who said it would help eliminate duplicate and bogus voters from election registers.

The Congress, Trinamool Congress, CPI, CPI-M, DMK, and Samajwadi Party have previously rejected the bill, claiming that it violated voters’ right to privacy.

Law Minister Kiren Rijiju called the bill “very good,” saying it would help the country eradicate false and bogus voting and make the election process more trustworthy.

The minister dismissed the opposition’s concerns about the bill as “baseless,” saying the opposition was “misinterpreting” the Supreme Court’s personal liberty decision.

“Your resistance to the bill is without basis. The Election Commission and the government have attended several meetings, with the Election Commission’s main worry being that the same person’s name appears on various electoral records, with no other method in place to verify this. Mr. Rijiju stated.

“The election process in our democracy should be clean, and that can only happen if the electoral registers are clean. Only those who benefit from bogus voting will reject this bill. Otherwise, there is no reason to oppose this legislation, “he said.

The Election Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2021, proposes allowing electoral registration authorities to ask for Aadhaar numbers from persons who wish to register as voters “for the purpose of verifying identification.”

It also aims to give electoral registration officers the power to ask for Aadhaar numbers from “persons already included in the electoral roll for the purposes of authentication of entries in the electoral roll and to identify the registration of the same person’s name in the electoral roll of more than one constituency or more than once in the same constituency.”

At the same time, the amendment Bill states that “no application for inclusion of a person’s name in the electoral roll shall be denied, and no entries in the electoral roll shall be deleted because an individual is unable to furnish or intimate his or her Aadhaar number due to such sufficient cause as may be prescribed.”

Such individuals will be permitted to provide any other alternative documentation that may be required.

 

Source: NDTV

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