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ELECTION CMMISSION OF INDIA MODEL CODE OF CONDUCT FOR THE GUIDANCE OF POLITICAL PARTIES AND CANDIDATES
From which date the Model Code of Conduct is enforced and operational upto which date? The Model Code of Conduct is enforced from the date of announcement of election schedule by the Election Commission and is operational till the process of elections are completed What remains unaffected Ongoing programmes that started in the field before announcement of polls Relief and rehabilitation measures to people affected by natural calamities Grant of cash or medical facilities to terminally or critically-ill persons with approprlate approvals Use of public places such as maidans/ helipads to be avallable Impartlally to all contesting parties to ensure a level playing field
What is applicability of code during general elections and bye-elections? a. During general elections to House of People (Lok Sabha), the code is applicable throughout the country. b. During general elections to the Legislative Assembly (Vidhan Sabha), the code is applicable in the entire State. c. During bye-elections, the code is applicable in the entire district or districts in which the constituency falls.
What are the salient features of the Model Code of Conduct? The salient features of the Model Code of Conduct lay down how political parties, contesting candidates and party(s) in power should conduct themselves during the process of elections i.e. on their general conduct during electioneering, holding meetings and processions, poll day activities and functioning of the party in power etc.
Q. Whether a Minister can combine his official visit with electioneering work? No. The Ministers shall not combine their official visit with electioneering work and shall not also make use of official machinery or personnel during the electioneering work.
Q. Whether Govt. transport can be used for electioneering work? No. No transport including official air-crafts, vehicles etc. shall be used for furtherance of the interest of any party or a candidate
Whether Govt. can make transfers and postings of officials who are related to election work? There shall be a total ban on the transfer and posting of all officers/officials directly or indirectly connected with the conduct of the election. If any transfer or posting of an officer is considered necessary, prior approval of the Commission shall be obtained.
Suppose an officer related to election work has been transferred by the Govt. before enforcement of model code of conduct and has not taken over charge at new place. Can such officer take over charge of office at new place after announcement of the code? No Status-quo-ante shall be maintained.
Whether a Minister of Union or State can summon any election related officer of the constituencv or the State for any official discussion during the period of elections? No Minister, whether of Union or State, can summon any election related officer of the constituency or the State for any official discussions anywhere. If Union Minister is traveling out of Delhi on purely official business, which cannot be avoided in public interest, then a letter certifying to this effect should be sent from the concerned Secretary of the Ministry/Department to the Chief Secretary of the concerned State, with a copy to the Election Commission
Can an official meet the minister on his private visit to the Constituency where elections are being held? Any official who meets the Minister on his private visit to the constituency shall be guilty of misconduct under the relevant service rules; and if he happens to be an official mentioned in Section 129 (1) of the Representation of People Act, 1951, he shall also be additionally considered to have violated the statutory provisions of that Section and liable to penal action provided thereunder.
hether Ministers or any other political functionaries can use pilot car with beacon lights affixed with siren? Minister or any other political functionary is not allowed during election period, to use pilot car or car with beacon lights of any colour or car affixed with sirens of any kind whether on private or official visit, even if the State administration has granted him a security cover requiring presence of armed guards to accompany him on such visit. This prohibition is applicable whether the vehicle is government owned or private owned
Whether facility of official vehicles can be withdrawn from those ministers who violate the provisions of Model Code of conduct? Yes The Chief Electoral Officer shall also recover the cost of propulsion from the ministers who may misuse their official position.
Whether members of Finance Commission of Govt. of India can visit State(s)? Yes Provided neither the press briefings nor press notes would be issued, highlighting the achievements of the State or otherwise.
Whether Chief Minister and other Ministers can attend New Year Day function (of the State), which is a State function? No Only Chief Secretary and other officials may participate and no political person including Chief Minister or Minister may participate in such function where Govt. funds are used.
Whether a Chief Minister/Minister /Speaker can attend a "State Day" function of a State? There is no objection provided that he does not make any political speech on the occasion and the function is to be conducted only by Govt. officials. No advertisement depicting the photograph of Chief Minister/Minister/Speaker shall be released.
Whether Governor/Chief Minister/Ministers can participate and address the Convocation function of University or Institute? Governor may participate and address the Convocation. Chief Minister or Ministers may be advised not to participate and address the Convocation.
Whether hoardings/advertisements etc. depicting the achievements of the party(s) in power at Centre/State Governments at the cost of public exchequer can be continued? No All such hoardings, advertisements etc. on display shall be removed forthwith by the concerned authorities. Further, no advertisements should be issued in the newspapers and other media including electronic media at the cost of public exchequer.
Whether money can be withdrawn from treasury against the sanctioned amount from the discretionary funds of Ministers to prepare draft in the names of beneficiaries which may be disbursed after process of election is completed? The funds may either be kept in "Personal Ledger Account" of the concerned Department or the release may be deferred till the completion of elections.
There are various rural development programmes/ schemes of Central government like Indira Awas Yojana, Sampoorna Grameen Rozgar Yojana, Swaranjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana, National Food for Work programme, National Rural Employment Guarantee Act. Are there any guidelines for implementation of these schemes/programmes? Yes Following guidelines shall be followed in respect of each scheme/programme as enumerated below:-
a) Indira Awas Yojana (IAY) Beneficiaries, who have been sanctioned housing scheme under IAY and have started work, will be assisted as per norms. No new constructions will be taken up or fresh beneficiaries sanctioned assistance till the elections are over. (b) Sampoorna Grameen Rozgar Yojana (SGRY) Continuing works in progress may be continued and funds earmarked for such works can be released. In case of any Panchayat where all ongoing works have been completed and there is a requirement for taking up new wage employment works and where funds released directly to the Panchayats from the Ministry of Rural Development are available, new works can be started from approved annual action plan for the current year with the prior consent of the District Election Officer. From other funds, no new works shall be started
National Employment Rural Guarantee Act (NERGA) The Ministry of Rural Development shall not increase the number of districts in which it is being implemented after announcement of elections. The job card holders will be provided employment in the ongoing work, if they demand work, after announcement of elections. In case no emplovment can be provided in ongoing works, the competent authority may start new work(s) from the shelf of projects that has been approved and inform the fact to concerned District Election Officer (DEO). No new work shall be started by the competent authority till such time employment can be given in ongoing works. In case no shelf of project is available or all works available on shelf have been exhausted then the concerned competent authority shall make a reference to the Commission for approval through the concerned DEO. The competent authority shall also furnish a certificate to DEO to the effect that the new work has been sanctioned as no employment can be given to the job card holder in the ongoing work.
Whether ongoing beneficiary scheme can be continued? No onge ing esing of beneficiary oriented cheme, even if ongoing, shall be suspended during election period. Further, no fresh release of funds on welfare schemes and works should be made.
How the Govt. may meet the emergency situation or unforeseen calamities, when there are restrictions for announcing welfare measures? For tackling emergencies or unforeseen calamities like providing relief to people suffering from drought, floods, pestilences, other natural calamities or welfare measures for the aged, infirm etc. Govt. may do so after obtaining prior approval of the Commission and all ostentatious functions shall be strictly avoided and no impression shall be given or allowed to be created that such welfare measures or relief and rehabilitation works are being undertaken by the Government in office with any ulterior motive.
Whether political functionaries can participate in the celebration of "Sadbhavna Diwas" which is celebrated through out the country? The Central Ministers Chief Minister/ Ministers in the States and other political functionaries can participate in the celebration of "Sadbhavna Diwas" subject to condition that the "theme" of their speeches should be confined only to the promotion of harmony among the people' and no political speech should be made. Messages, if any, issued in the name of Minister should be confined to the theme of national integration only and should carry no photograph of the concerned Minister.
Whether Kavi Sammelan, Mushiaras or other cultural functions can be organized in connection with the Independence Day/Republic Day celebration and whether political functionaries can attend the same? Yes The Central Ministers Chief Minister/ Ministers in the States and other political functionaries can attend the programme. However, it will be ensured that no political speeches highlighting the achievements of the party in power are made on the occasions.
1. GENERAL CONDUCT - No party or candidate shall include in any activity which may aggravate existing differences or create mutual hatred or cause tension between different castes and communities, religious or linguistic. Criticism of other political parties, when made, shall be confined to their policies and programme, past record and work. Parties and Candidates shall refrain from criticism of all aspects of private life, not connected with the public activities of the leaders or workers of other parties. Criticism of other parties or their workers based on unverified allegations or distortion shall be avoided " There shall be no appeal to caste or communal feelings for securing votes. Mosques, Churches, Temples or other places of worship shall not be used as forum for election propaganda.
III. PROCESSION (1) A Party or candidate organizing a procession shall decide before hand the time and place of the starting of the procession, the route to be followed and the time and place at which the procession wil terminate. There shall ordinary be on deviation from the programm . (2) The organisers shall give advance intimation to the local police authorities of the programme so as to enable the letter to make necessary arrangement.
(7) The political parties or candidates shall exercise control to the maximum extent possible in the matter of processionists carrying articles which may be put to misuse by undesirable elements especially in moments of excitement. (8) The carrying of effigies purporting to represent member of other political parties or their leaders, burning such effigies in public and such other forms demonstration shall not be countenanced by any political party or candidate.
(iv) refrain from serving or distributing liquor on polling day and during the fourty eight hours preceding it (v) not allow unnecessary crowd to be collected near the camps set up by the political parties and candidates near the polling booths so as to avoid Confrontation and tension among workers and sympathizers of the parties and the candidate. (vi) ensure that the candidate's camps shall be simple .The shall not display any posters, flags, symbols or any other propaganda material, No eatable shall be served or crowd allowed at the camps and V11) co-operate with the authorities in complying with the restrictions to be imposed on the plying of vehicles on the polling day and obtain permits for them which should be displayed prominently on those vehicles.
(ii) Public places such as maidans etc., for holding election meetings, and use of helipads for air-flights in connection with elections shall not be monopolized by itself. Other parties and candidates shall be allowed the use of such places and facilities on the same terms and conditions on which they are used by the party in power;
(v) Ministers and other authorities shall not sanction grants/payments out of discretionary funds from the time elections are announced by the Commission; and (vi) From the time elections are announced by Commission, Ministers and other authorities shall not (a) announce any financial grants in any form or promises thereof, or (b) (except civil servants) lay foundation stones etc. of projects or schemes of any kind; or (c) make any promise of construction of roads, provision of drinking water facilities etc.; or (d) make any ad-hoc appointments in Government, Public Undertakings etc. which may have the effect of influencing the voters in favour of the party in power.
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