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Election System in India

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  • Last Updated : 25 Mar, 2022
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An election is a system in which voters elect their representatives on a regular basis and can replace them at any time. Elections are a way of using ballots to elect representatives to various government positions. The core of democracy is an election. Elections must be held to elect representatives. Through their representatives, people rule in most democracies. Elections help determine whether or not the public approves of their leaders. Voters have a variety of choices in an election, ranging as

  • They have a say in the legislation that affects them.
  • They have the ability to choose who forms the government and makes major decisions.
  • They can choose which political party’s policies will have an impact on the government and legislative process.

What is the system of Elections in India?

India holds elections to the Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha (Assembly) every five years. The terms of all elected legislators are set to expire in five years. Either on the same day or within a few days, elections are held simultaneously in all constituencies. This is referred to as a General Election. Sometimes a single constituency election is called to fill a vacancy caused by a member’s death or resignation. A “by-election” is a term for this type of election.  

Following are types of election:

  • Parliamentary general elections (Lok Sabha)-Members of the Lok Sabha (House of the People), or lower house of India’s Parliament, are elected by all adult citizens of India from a list of candidates running for their particular seats. Every adult Indian citizen is only permitted to vote in the constituency in which they reside. “Members of Parliament,” refers to the candidates who win the Lok Sabha elections and hold their seats for five years or until the President, on the advice of the council of ministers, dissolves the body. The house meets in the Sansad Bhavan’s Lok Sabha Chambers in New Delhi to discuss issues such as the introduction of new laws, the repeal of current laws, and the improvement of existing laws that affect all Indian citizens. Once every five years, 543 members of the Lok Sabha are elected (Lower house).
  • State Assembly (Vidhan Sabha) Elections-Members of the State Legislative Assembly are elected from a field of candidates running in their districts by popular vote. Every adult Indian citizen is only permitted to vote in the constituency in which they reside. Candidates who win seats in the State Legislative Assemblies are referred to as “Members of Legislative Assembly” (MLA) and serve for five years or until the Governor dissolves the body. The house meets in each state to discuss issues such as the development of new laws, the repeal or improvement of existing laws that impact all citizens in that state.
  • Rajya Sabha (Upper House) Elections –The Rajya Sabha, commonly known as the Council of States, is India’s Parliament’s upper house. Candidates are chosen by Members of Legislative Assemblies rather than citizens, and up to 12 can be nominated by the President of India for contributions to art, literature, science, and social services. Members of the Rajya Sabha have a six-year term, with one-third of the body being up for re-election every two years. Before a bill becomes an act, the Rajya Sabha serves as a second-level review body. The Vice President of India serves as the Rajya Sabha’s ex-officio Chairman, presiding over its proceedings. Legislative proposals (creating new laws, repealing or adding additional conditions to existing laws) are presented in the form of a bill to either house of Parliament.

Election Campaign

The term “election campaign” refers to the promotion (or “propaganda”) of the candidates’ policies, offers, and promises to voters, which they intend to keep if they are elected. Voters can then choose who they want to vote for. They cast their ballots for the candidate whose policies they support. Between the announcement of the final list of candidates and the date of polling in India, election campaigning lasts two weeks. Candidates contact their voters, political leaders, speak in election meetings, and political parties mobilize their followers during this time. This is also the time of year when election-related stories and debates dominate television news and publications.
Political parties begin campaigning for elections months before they take place. Political parties strive to focus public attention on a few major issues during election campaigns. They want to draw the public’s attention to the issue so that they can vote on it. 

Democratic Election in India

Many variables contribute to the democratic nature of Indian elections. These are:

Independent Election Commission

 Elections in our country are overseen by an independent and powerful Election Commission (EC).It possesses the same degree of autonomy as the judiciary. The Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) appointed by the President of India.CEC is not accountable to the President or the government once appointed. 
The Election Commission has the following powers:

  • It makes decisions’ on all aspects of election conduct and control, from the announcement of elections through the declaration of results.
  • It is in charge of enforcing the code of conduct and punishing any candidate or political party who breaks it.
  • The Election Commission has the authority to order the government to observe certain standards throughout the election period.
  • These standards prohibit the use and abuse of government power in order to improve the administration’s chances of winning elections or transferring some government employees.
  • The Election Commission, not the government, is in charge of government officers on election duty.
  • If election officials believe that polling in some booths or possibly an entire constituency was unfair, they request a rerun. 

Popular Participation

Another option to assess the quality of the electoral process is to use this method. People will not continue to participate in the electoral process if it is not free and fair. Voter turnout is a common way of measuring people’s election participation. The percentage of eligible voters who actually vote is known as turnout. In India, voter turnout has either remained constant or increased during the last 50 years. In India, the poor, illiterate, and downtrodden vote in greater numbers than the rich and privileged.

Sample Questions

Question 1: We’ve seen why elections are necessary in democracies. Why, on the other hand, do rulers in non-democratic countries feel the need to organize elections?

Answer:

Elections are necessary for rulers in non-democratic countries because:

  • They want to demonstrate to the rest of the world that they aren’t disliked.
  • They aim to demonstrate that they have the backing of the country’s citizens, which will boost their image in the eyes of the international community.
  • They aim to demonstrate that their government and position were established legally and in accordance with the Constitution.

Question 2: What is the model election campaign code of conduct?

Answer:

The model code of conduct is a collection of rules and principles that political and campaign candidates must observe during election season.

  • No political party or candidate can use a place of worship for election propaganda, according to this.
  • For elections, utilize government vehicles, planes, and personnel.
  • After the election date is established, lay the foundation stones for any project.

Question 3: Mention any three claims of unfair election tactics that have been documented in elections, newspapers, and television?

Answer:

The following three charges of electoral fraud are frequently reported in newspapers and on television.

  • False names are included in the voter list, but authentic names are not.
  • The ruling party is abusing government infrastructure and officials.
  • Excessive spending by wealthy candidates and political parties.

Question 4: Describe the significance of the election results in India.

Answer:

India’s election results are as follows:

  • In India, the ruling parties often lose both national and state elections.In reality, in the last fifteen years, the ruling party has lost all three elections.
  • Candidates who are known to have spent a significant amount of money on ‘buying votes,’ as well as those with criminal ties, frequently lose elections.
  • Electoral outcomes are largely acknowledged as the “people’s decision” by defeated parties, with the exception of a few disputed elections. Given the foregoing, it is reasonable to conclude that the election’s  and final measure of its independence and impartiality is the outcome.

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