Tuesday, August 27, 2019

2019 Editorial, "INDIA A 'UNION OF TERRITORIES' ONLY?" in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 August 2019, Vol. 15, Part 2, No. 15 issue

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2019 Editorial, "PRESSTITUTES SUPPRESSING FREE SPEECH," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 31 July 2019, Vol. 15, Part 2, No. 14 issue

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Editorial, "OPPRESSION OF HUMAN RIGHTS ACTIVISTS," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 15 July 2019, Vol. 15, Part 2, No. 13 issue

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Editorial, "THE KASHMIR CONFLAGRATION," in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, 30 June 2019, Vol. 15, Part 1, No. 12 issue

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Editorial, "TECHNOLOGY TO AID, NOT ARREST, FREEDOMS" in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, Volume 15, Part 1, No. 11, the 15 June 2019 issue

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Editorial, "WORLD AT THE MERCY OF WARMONGERS?" in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, Volume 15, Part 1, No. 10, the 31 May 2019 issue

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Editorial, "THE FIRST TERRORIST IN INDIA" in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, Volume 15, Part 1, No. 9, the 15 May 2019 issue

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Editorial, "REFORM OUR ELECTION COMMISSION" in LAW ANIMATED WORLD, Volume 15, Part 1, No. 8, the 30 April 2019 issue

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And our election system also! These two things are direly needed to be done if our democracy has to survive with any semblance of honesty, transparency and real regard to the basic rights and entitlements of the people. The serious risks and enormous losses involved in the use of Electronic Voting Machines, and the need to trash them and go back to paper ballot have been editorially highlighted in our 15 December 2018 issue. Later when polls actually took place, and are still going on in some parts of the country, we see the EVMs everywhere behaving strangely and in Andhra polls being held up to late nights/next day early mornings. Also allegations are being leveled of the VVPAT code itself being surreptitiously changed thus giving room for pre-fabrication of the results even. Now we see, in Andhra Pradesh at least, the Election Commission usurping more powers than granted by the Constitution and acting whimsically and transferring key officers arbitrarily; even appointing a most inappropriate person, to say the least, as the Chief Secretary who is now creating serious problems by trying to run almost a parallel administration, instead of what he is lawfully bound to do – to assist, and act per the instructions of, the Council of Ministers in general, save in case of any election related matters. This again tells about the States’ powers being whittled down and a sort of disguised presidential rule imposed and complaints are coming of the quirks and blunders of the Election Commission of India in other states too and so the manner of appointment of and the need to control the arbitrary exercises of the Commission also become hot topics of discussion. It may be recollected that Sri Advani, a best parliamentarian of the BJP, himself had earlier proposed that a committee with the Prime Minister, the chairs of both the Houses of the Parliament, the opposition leader, et al be constituted for the selection and appointment of ECI and also the CAG. In Pakistan, the Chief Election Commissioner has to be a retired Supreme Court Judge and four other Commissioners to be retired high court judges of the four provinces in federation – certainly a better selection system than ours. Also some sort of, and some proportion of, a proportional representation system is also a desideratum. All this calls for a mammoth movement by the people with the slogan “Back to Ballot!” and also for curbing and improving the Election Commission and the election systems, especially in a manner protecting and promoting the federal spirit and people’s participatory content of our democratic structure. §§§