CJI No Longer Part of ECI Selection Panel
Govt Moves Bill to Change Election Commission Appointment Process, No CJI in Selection Panel
The government has moved a bill in Parliament to change the process for appointing the Election Commission of India (ECI). The bill proposes to replace the Chief Justice of India (CJI) from the selection committee for the ECI.
Article 324 of the Constitution lays down the current process for appointing the ECI. It states that the ECI shall consist of a Chief Election Commissioner and two Election Commissioners, to be a appointed by the President. The President shall appoint the Chief Election Commissioner after consulting the Election Commission and the leaders of the majority party and the largest opposition party in the Lok Sabha. The President shall also appoint the other Election Commissioners in consultation with the Chief Election Commissioner.
The new bill proposes to change the composition of the selection committee for the ECI. The Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha, and a Cabinet Minister will constitute the new committee nominated by the Prime Minister. The CJI will no longer be a member of the selection committee.
The government is making changes to the appointment process for the ECI to make it more transparent and accountable. The government has also said that the changes will ensure that the ECI is independent of the executive.
The bill has been met with criticism from some quarters. The CJI has said that the changes are “unnecessary” and “unwarranted”. The CJI has said that the current process for appointing the ECI is “fair and transparent”.
Parliament is likely to debate the bill in the coming weeks. The bill’s chances of passage are unclear.