The Election Commission of India (ECI) will hold Rajya Sabha bypolls for six seats, one each in West Bengal, Assam, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh and two seats in Tamil Nadu on 4 October. The bypolls for an Assembly Council seat in Bihar will be held on 4 October.
On Wednesday, it was reported that the ECI has made a fresh push to change the electoral law to get powers to de-register political parties which are dormant and have not contested polls.
The issue was among the various electoral reforms discussed by a senior EC official with Law Minister Kiren Rijiju here last week, according to a PTI report.
There are several proposals on electoral reforms pending with the government.
While the poll watchdog has the mandate to register a political party, it lacks power under electoral law to deregister any party.
Its demand to get the power to deregister a party is pending with the Law Ministry for years now.
At one point, the poll panel had identified various parties which have not contested polls since 2005 and had ‘delisted’ over 200 of them.
The EC suspects that most of them exist on papers to help people convert their back money into white by accepting donations.
With its demand to get power to deregister a party pending with the government, the Commission had in the past used its powers under Article 324 of the Constitution to delist parties for being dormant and not contesting elections for a long time.
Seeking to stem the flow of black money in elections, the Commission has proposed a slew of electoral reforms.
There are around 3000 registered political parties, including eight recognised as national parties and 53 recognised as state parties.
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