What did former CEC TN Seshan do that changed the country’s electoral politics? Learn – न्यूज़लीड India

What did former CEC TN Seshan do that changed the country’s electoral politics? Learn


Supreme Court remembers TN Seshan

The Supreme Court on Tuesday said that the Constitution has vested too many powers on the “delicate shoulders” of the Chief Election Commissioner and two election commissioners. The Supreme Court has also said that the Chief Election Commissioner should be such a person who does not allow himself to be influenced or it should be a person who is completely apolitical. The Supreme Court has also mooted the idea that the Chief Justice of India may also be involved in the appointment process of the CEC to maintain the position of ‘neutrality’. A five-member constitution bench headed by Justice KM Joseph in the Supreme Court also referred to former Chief Election Commissioner late TN Seshan and said that strong character like TN Seshan are rare. Overall, the Supreme Court insisted that the process of appointment of the Chief Election Commissioner should be such that only the ‘best’ becomes the CEC.

CEC should be the best person - Supreme Court

CEC should be the best person – Supreme Court

The Supreme Court said, ‘CECs have been many and TN sessions happen only occasionally. We do not want anyone to try to influence it. Too many powers have been vested on the delicate shoulders of three men. We have to find the best person for the post of CEC. The question is how do we find the best person and hire the best person. Apart from Justice Joseph, Justice Ajay Rastogi, Justice Aniruddha Bose, Justice Hrishikesh Roy and Justice CT Ravikumar were also included in this bench. If understood as a common man, then the Supreme Court’s statement is completely justified in the sense that since TN Seshan became the Chief Election Commissioner, the Election Commission has been fulfilling its responsibilities as an independent body completely separate from the government. It seems to have happened.

Who was TN Seshan?

Who was TN Seshan?

Late TN Seshan or Tirunellai Narayana Iyer Seshan was the former Chief Election Commissioner of India. He was appointed as the 10th CEC of the country on December 12, 1990 and his term was for five years i.e. December 11, 1996. He was born on December 15, 1932 in Kalakadu, Palakkad district of Kerala. He was a 1955 batch IAS officer of Tamil Nadu cadre. From March 27, 1989 to December 23, 1989, he was the Cabinet Secretary to the Government of India, which is considered to be the highest post of the Indian Administrative Service.

TN Seshan's election reforms

TN Seshan’s election reforms

Of all the Chief Election Commissioners in India, TN Seshan is the only one who has changed the entire working of the Election Commission (at least in the eyes of the public) since his arrival. As CEC, Seshan is known for his historic electoral reforms and has enhanced the dignity and prestige of the Election Commission. Because, since its inception in 1950 till TN Seshan assumed office, the Election Commission of India was seen in the role of election observer in a way. It was a time when bribing voters was a common practice, but Seshan ensured that the Election Commission was empowered by the Constitution.

Country's electoral politics changed due to TN Seshan

Country’s electoral politics changed due to TN Seshan

TN Seshan issued a list of 150 such malpractices during the elections to conduct a free and fair election process, which were banned by the Election Commission. These include distribution of liquor during elections, bribing voters, writing on walls, unnecessary noise during election campaign and use of loudspeakers besides use of religion in speech etc. It was Seshan who started the system of Voter ID card which seemed impossible at that time. Some political parties were even ready to openly oppose it. Not only this, the model code of conduct before elections began to be implemented regularly and strictly and limits were fixed on election expenses. Prior to him, the arbitrariness of political parties and candidates was established on all this.

When Seshan had differences with the Congress government

When Seshan had differences with the Congress government

The manner in which TN Seshan, ignoring the interests of the then central government, only started ensuring the constitution and election rules were followed, due to which his differences with the government started. In 1993, the then Congress government invoked Article 342 (2) to rein in Seshan.[3] In addition to the CEC, two election commissioners MS Gill and GVG Krishnamurthy were appointed through an ordinance under the . Seshan challenged this in the Supreme Court, but the court dismissed his plea. The Supreme Court declared the arrangement of the CEC and one or more Election Commissioners as constitutional. This system is still going on today.

Also read- 'Best Man' should be selected as Chief Election Commissioner, 10 big things of Supreme Court on Election CommissionAlso read- ‘Best Man’ should be selected as Chief Election Commissioner, 10 big things of Supreme Court on Election Commission

TN Seshan had also contested the presidential election

TN Seshan had also contested the presidential election

TN Seshan had not only become popular in the country because of establishing election reforms in India on his own, his own international image had also been established. He was awarded the Ramon Magsaysay Award in 1996 for cleaning up the country’s electoral system. In 1997, TN Seshan also contested the presidential election against KR Narayanamurthy. He died in Chennai on 10 November 2019 at the age of 86.

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