ECI holds special session in Delhi NPP makes a strong plea against EVMs
Election Commission of India presided over by the Chief Election Commissioner, Mr. Om Prakash Rawat held its historic session today in which 07 national parties and 51 state recognized political parties participated with equal participation expressing their views on Fidelity of Electoral Rolls, Women Participation in Election, Election Expenditure Profile, Election Campaign Period, Conduct of Election, Alternative Modes of Voting, Migrant Voters as well as on the use of Electronic Voting Machines.
The Chief Election Commissioner, Mr .Om Prakash Rawat presided over the historic session and almost all national and state parties (only recognised) participated. The Chief Election Commissioner in his inaugural address expressed full confidence in the leadership of the political parties and assured that all positive contributions shall be honoured by the Commission.
J&K National Panthers Party was represented by Prof.Bhim Singh & Shri Harsh Dev Singh. The JKNPP made impressive representation pressing for the alternative to the present Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) which were not reliable and could not be trusted for many reasons. Shri Harsh Dev Singh in his presentation urged to replace the voting machines because the voters have no confidence in this process. He also urged the Election Commission to use this office to gear the ruthless power enjoyed by authoritarian district officer heading the districts. He also presented a document to the Chief Election Commissioner on the unfortunate, of course, undesirable incident that was prompted by the district administration at Udhampur.
Prof.Bhim Singh in his interaction strongly pleaded for the abolition of EVM system which empowers the local administration under the command of State Govt. to rig the polls and bring results in favour of the ruling parties. He said that J&K is one of those states where the ruling parties have been manipulating the elections by using the EVMs and other corrupt means and methods. He strongly favoured the proposition to abolish EVM from the system and revert back in the interest of democracy and rule of law which are feeling suffocated under the present system. Dictatorial government and ruthless EVM system causing havoc to democracy particularly in a state like J&K where more than 60% voters are illiterate even today in spite of the fact that the state has free education from primary to post graduation. More than 60% voters are kept illiterate.
Prof.Bhim Singh demanded that Chapter on Fundamental Rights in the Indian Constitution shall have to be extended to the State of J&K so that the Indian citizens (voters) in the State of J&K shall also enjoy the freedom enshrined in the Constitution of India. He said that Article 35(A) which has deprived the citizens of India residing in J&K of all their Fundamental Rights enshrined in Article 14, 16, 19 & all other rights by inserting Article 35(A) in 1954 through Presidential Order which he said was absolutely horrifying, draconian and against the interest of the people. Prof.Bhim Singh said that neither President nor any other power has any constitutional right to take away the freedom and fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution of India. He said that introduction of Article 35(A) has been, improper, unconstitutional and has been misused to deprive the voters of J&K of the freedoms enshrined in Article 19 and equal status under Article 14. He said that the President of India could issue an Ordinance may it be called Presidential Order that could last for only six months not beyond. He said that Article 35(A) has been used by the rulers of J&K against the citizens of India residing in J&K under a wrong and deceptive pretext. The ruling governments in J&K have been using Article 35(A) like a sword against the innocent people of J&K. He further said that Article 35(A) could not have been pronounced as a sword to take away the Fundamental Rights, freedoms enshrined in Chapter-III of the Indian Constitution. He regretted that the ruling parties of J&K since 1950 have been using Article 35(A) of the Indian Constitution to govern the State under their dictatorial laws the state has been framing under the pretext of Article 35(A) though Article 35(A) has never permitted the State Govt. of J&K to interfere or curve the freedom of speech or expression or any other fundamental right of the citizens of India residing in J&K. Article 35(A) had allowed the state, could be valid for six months only relating to defining classes of persons, Permanent Residents, imposing special rights or privileges (the state has been using it to take away special rights and privileges though), employment, matters relating to property, settlement in the state, scholarship etc.
Prof.Bhim Singh said that the ruling parties in J&K nor its legislature was empowered to take away the fundamental rights which was guaranteed the residents of J&K in Chapter-III of the Indian Constitution. Article 35(A) has been used as a sword by the ruling parties to deprive the residents of J&K of fundamental rights. Public Safety Act imposed by Govt. of J&K in 1978 was used/has been used as a sword which is drawn from the dark shade of Article 35(A). He said that this matter did not cover the arena of the Election Commission of India though, it is urgent he said to let the media of the country also know the basic tragedies faced by the India citizens.
Prof.Bhim Singh expressed shock on the media reports like the one made today by India TV News Desk, New Delhi projecting that, “Presidential Order, 1954, accords special rights and privileges to the citizens of J&K and denies property right to a woman who marries the person from outside the state. Another surprise story floated that 35(A) also bars people from rest of the country from buying, owning the immovable property in the state, settle permanently or get state government jobs.” This has been attributed to “we the citizens who files a writ petition before the Supreme Court”. He said that this is a share propaganda clothed with lies. Article 35(A) has nothing to do with the right to property, woman marriage or transfer of property or settlement or resettlement in J&K. All the basic and fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution of India were incorporated by Maharaja Hari Singh in 1927 in the Constitution of J&K and the Constituent Assembly had made it clear that all the laws which were applicable to J&K before 1950 shall remain unchanged. This gurantee has been given in the Constitution of India. Article 12 & 13 of the Constitution of India make it clear that the laws made prior to 1950 in any stage unless they have been declared otherwise, shall not be removed or dropped. This clearly means that laws made by the ruler of J&K shall continue to be enforced if they have not been touched by the Constituent Assembly of India. So the laws made in respect of State Subjects (Permanent Residents) by any authority before 1950 are not changeable.