EC wants law amended to empower it to postpone, cancel polls

The Election Commission (EC) has urged the Union Government to amend the electoral law Representation of the People Act (RPA), 1951 to empower it to either postpone or countermand elections if evidence emerges of use of money to influence voters.
In this regard, EC has asked Union Government to insert a new clause ‘58 B’ in the RPA, 1951 to allow adjournment or countermanding (declaring invalid) of election on the grounds of use of money power (bribery) in the affected polling areas. The provision would also empower the EC to re-schedule the elections in such areas.
Present Scenario
At present, Clause 58A of RPA empowers EC to cancel polls only if there is an evidence of use of muscle power or booth-capturing to influence votes to change outcome of elections.
However in recent time, candidates and political parties are allegedly doling out cash and giving freebies (gifts) to woo the electorate



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