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Dissent in model code violation cases would not be made public: Election Commission

Election Commission

New Delhi | Rejecting the demand of Election Commissioner Ashok Lavasa, the ‘full commission’ on Tuesday ruled that dissents and minority views in EC orders in cases of model code violations would not be made public.

The dissent notes and minority views would remain part of records as it is the case now, the Election Commission (EC) said in a statement.

“In the meeting of the Election Commission held today regarding the issue of MCC (Model Code of Conduct), it was interalia decided that proceedings of the commission’s meetings would be drawn, including the views of all the commission members.

“Thereafter, formal instructions to this effect would be issued in consonance with extant laws/rules, etc,” the poll panel said in a statement.

Lavasa has recused himself from MCC violation cases, saying his dissent was not being made part of the orders.

He had given his dissent in some of the commission’s clean chits to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP president Amit Shah in complaints of MCC violations.

The EC had maintained that since the poll code violation cases are not quasi judicial in nature, they are not signed by the chief election commissioner (CEC) and fellow commissioners, and thus, the dissent cannot be made part of the order.

“Status quo will be maintained. Dissent will not be made public but would form part of EC records,” explained an official.

As per the law governing the functioning of the EC, efforts should have an unanimity, but in the case of a dissent, a majority (2:1) view prevails.

The full commission comprises CEC Sunil Arora and fellow commissioners Lavasa and Sushil Chandra.

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