Election Commission additional defers Rajya Sabha elections to 18 seats amid Coronavirus outbreak

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New Delhi: The Election Commission on Friday stated it’s utilizing its constitutional powers to defer Rajya Sabha polls to 18 seats past the phrases of the retiring members, protecting in thoughts the well being hazard concerned attributable to coronavirus pandemic and the 21-day nationwide lockdown.

Last month, the ballot panel had deferred the March 26 Rajya Sabha elections citing menace of coronavirus, saying a call will likely be taken after reviewing the scenario.

While 17 members from six states are retiring on April 9, one from Meghalaya is retiring on April 12.

The 18 seats are unfold throughout Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Manipur, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Meghalaya.

In a press release, the Commission stated the electoral course of essentially includes motion and gathering of polling officers, brokers of political events, assist officers and members of respective legislative assemblies on the ballot day, which can put public security in danger and create public well being hazard.

“The fee has reviewed the present unexpected scenario of public well being emergency and the feasibility of finishing the ballot course of for the aforesaid election.

“The commission, after taking all facts and circumstances in view, is of considered view that continuing electoral process in the current environment may not be feasible in view of the restrictions for the maintenance of public safety and avoiding health hazard…,” the assertion stated.

The EC stated the elections to the 28 seats can’t be accomplished inside its “scheduled term”.

“Commission invoking its powers under Article 324 of the Constitution of India read with section 153 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 has further extended the period of election beyond the prescribed term(s) of above mentioned seats,” it stated.

Elections to replenish 55 seats within the Upper House of Parliament had been to be held on March 26 although 37 candidates have already been elected with no contest.