- The Election Commission of India (ECI) is entrusted with the Constitution mandated responsibilities of undertaking elections to the Parliament and the State Assemblies whenever the Houses complete their respective terms. Most admirably, the ECI has been successful in conducting such a gigantic task in the second-most populous country in the world with great elan. The efficiency, diligence, and impartial conduct of the elections over the years has only strengthened the democratic credentials of the country and the ECI garners a major chunk of the accolades for continuing to remain neutral whilst discharging responsibilities.
- And India as a country is always in the election mode for one or the other states, panchayat, or some such requirements is also stating the obvious. Agreed, under normal circumstances, the matter of elections would have generated tremendous interest and enthusiasm from both the political parties as well as frenzied people who make the democratic process such vibrant and welcoming. Not for nothing, the electoral process in India is monikered as Dance of Democracy with its vivaciousness not leaving anyone untouched. Especially so when the Parliamentary elections and the State Assembly elections are underway in full tilt. A sight to behold, no less.
- Now, we all know the present pandemic raged universe is perennially subjugated by the vagaries of the virulent virus as humanity is battling to stay afloat on the back of devastating waves after waves of Covid-19 infections. The situation all around is grim, and none can dispute this. Against this backdrop, there are crucial State elections that are due in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Goa, and Manipur in the next few months amid growing concerns of the new coronavirus variant Omicron playing a spoilsport. Several nations around the world are already reeling under the impact of the latest surge courtesy of the new variant.PC: pikisuperstar
- India toois steadily witnessing the new variant making its debilitating presence felt as the number of cases identified sees an uptick. As is its wont, major political parties are already in the election mode trying to ensure the electorate is swayed by the usual assurances, promises, and incentives thrown around generously. As you know, the state of Uttar Pradesh will be critical for survival for major parties including the incumbent one. The entire nation also witnessed what transpired during the early months of this year when few of the states went into long-stretched elections leading to the surge.
- None of the restrictions imposed by the EC was adhered to by the political parties as maintaining social distancing norms amid teeming lakhs of enthusiastic people during rallies is well nigh impossible. Usage of the digital medium to reach out to eligible voters virtually has not really piqued the interest of political parties on expected lines either. Cautioning the ECI, the Allahabad High Court has observed whether UP elections should be deferred. Add to it, the IIT-Kanpur study forecasting an Omicron peak in February should make the ECI mull over the prudency of conducting elections amid real threats. It will be interesting to see what the ECI decides in the coming weeks. Over to the ECI, an unenviable task indeed.