[3/2, 17:39] Sekarreporter1: https://twitter.com/sekarreporter1/status/1366722265082028032?s=08
[3/2, 17:39] Sekarreporter1: Today the Hon’ble Chief Justice bench permitted the DMK to challenge the Election∞ Commission Guidelines dated 2.2.2021 and notification dated 27.2.2021 by allowing the application seeking amendment.
Thus the EC’s decision to give ballot through Block Level officers through its guideline dated 2.2.2021 to 4 category is permitted to be challenged by the first bench.
The DMK party earlier filed writ petition challenging section 60 C of RP Act 1951 and the Election Commission notification dated 17.9.2020, 22.9.2020,28.9.2020 and instructions dated 3.10.2020.
Mr P. Wilson in his arguments submitted that section 60 C of RP Act 1961 is unconstitutional as it is very vague and gives untrammelled un canalised power to ECI and Government to name any one and every one entitled for postal ballot. He submitted that such classification leads to inequality in electorate and is in violation of Art 325 ,15(1) of constitution. He submitted that secrecy to voting is Guaranteed in RP Act 1951 and a normal voter who votes in polling booth after multilevel checks is not only ensured of free exercise of his will through voting without any fear but is also assured of secrecy in voting as he is left alone at least for half a minute to vote of his choice consciously . This is not found in the recent amendment rules which enables personal delivery of ballots at the residences of 4 categories through BLO and voting before him and if every one and every body is given such personal ballot all the basic fundamental of free and fair elections and purity in elections will be destroyed. He submitted that the central government brought amendment to conduct of election Rules 1961 in 2019 and 2020 and created a new category of voters called absentee voters .
These voters are skipping polling booth and can vote from their residences . The 4 category are essential workers, person with disability, person with 80+,COVID 19 suspect ,affected,institutional and home Quarentine
He submitted that they are not class by themselves and the classification is unreasonable and that the guidelines and notifications are against RPAct. He said purity in elections is the basic feature of constitution and if such manner of voting is allowed it not only violates secrecy of voting but also affects free and fair elections and purity in elections .
The election commission filed its counter stating that all the notification dated 17.9.2020,22.9.2020,28.9.2020 issued by it for Bihar including one for TN are not going to be used in Tamilnadu elections and that EC has framed separate guidelines dated 2.2.2021 which will be used for TN. The EC also said that it has listed 10 services as Essential services in TN and they alone will be given with postal ballots.
Due to the recent developments, the court permitted to challenge the ECI’s recent guidelines and notification.