New Delhi: Recommending statutory backup to the Model Code of Conduct, a Parliamentary Committee has sought to take away certain powers vested with the Election Commission like de-recognising a political party.
The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Public Grievances, Law and Justice in its 61st report on electoral reforms has also recommended that the Model Code of Conduct be enforced from the date of notification and not from the date of announcement of polls.
It sought revision in election expenditure limit of a candidate to make it more realistic and for setting up of fast-track courts to dispose of election disputes within a period of 12 months.
"The Committee strongly feels that it is expedient to enact law for giving statutory backup to Model Code of Conduct leaving no vacuum for ECI to exercise its power which is residuary in nature. The Committee recommends that provisions of Model Code of Conduct may be formed a part of Representation of People Act, 1951 or rules framed thereunder for free and fair elections in the country," panel Chairman Shantaram Naik said.
"Nobody authorised the EC to create a law... It can only interpret a law and point it out. This concept has to be remembered," he said pointing out to the powers vested with the poll panel under Article 324 of Constitution.
"The instructions/orders issued by Election Commission of India under Article 324 of the Constitution sometimes appears to be encroaching upon legislative power of Parliament. The Committee stresses upon the government that such instructions/ orders issued by Election Commission of India may be suitably incorporated in the Representation of People Act, 1951 or rules framed thereunder," the Committee said.