PM-led Committee Appoints Two New Election Commissioners

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PM-led Committee Appoints Two New Election Commissioners

| Updated: March 14, 2024 17:03

A three-member committee led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has appointed bureaucrats Gyanesh Kumar and Sukhbir Singh Sandhu as Election Commissioners (ECs). The announcement was made by Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, a member of the selection panel, in a media briefing following the meeting.

The appointments come in the wake of the recent resignation of Election Commissioner Arun Goel, just ahead of the Lok Sabha elections.

The selection panel, which includes the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition and a designated Union Cabinet Minister, unanimously selected Gyanesh Kumar and Sukhbir Singh Sandhu for the positions. Chowdhury serves on the three-member panel in his capacity as the opposition member.

Gyanesh Kumar, a retired IAS officer of the Kerala Cadre, played a pivotal role in the abrogation of Article 370 as the head of the Kashmir Division of the Ministry of Home Affairs. He was instrumental in the establishment of the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Teertha Kshetra Trust.

Sukhbir Singh Sandhu, an Officer of the Uttarakhand Cadre, has held significant positions in the Central government as well as the governments of Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh and Punjab.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah was also present at the meeting alongside the Prime Minister and the Congress leader. However, Chowdhury expressed his discontent over the law that replaced the Chief Justice of India with a Union Minister on the selection committee.

Chowdhury argued that the Chief Justice of India should have been part of the committee and criticized the law enacted last year, stating it had reduced the meeting to a mere “formality”. He further added, “The government is in the majority on the panel. What they want happens.”

Chowdhury also revealed that he was given 212 names for scrutiny the night before the meeting. “I reached Delhi last night and the meeting was today at noon. I was given 212 names, how can someone examine so many candidates in a day? Then, I was given six shortlisted names before the meeting. The majority is with them, so they chose the candidates they wanted,” he said.

Also Read: Shah Slams Oppn Leaders, Says It’s Impossible To Repeal CAA 

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