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Election Commissioner Chawla:Resign or be Sacked!

Submitted by on January 31, 2009 – 4:03 pm

With Chief Election Commissioner N Gopalaswami recommending the removal of his colleague Navin Chawla, a kind of constitutional crisis has been precipitated. Former Lok Sabha secretary general and a constitutional expert Subash Kashyap said that the letter had put the government in a fix. He further stated that the President had recommended the letter to the PMO. “If Chawla is removed now and with the CEC retiring on April 20 – in the middle of the elections – the government will have to appoint a new election commissioner to supervise the elections,” he said.
Whereas some legal experts have voiced concern that the timing by the CEC is ill-suited and smacks of some motivation.
One thing is for sure: Navin Chawla has been a controversial beaurocrat and has been perceived close to Congress party (remember Romesh Bhandari! An IAS officer who blatantly played to the tunes of Congress party, very vocal to defend his actions and ever eager to throw rules and regulations to the wind; he was later elevated to the gubernatorial post in Uttar Pradesh). Chawla belongs to that genre of self-serving beaurocrats! Election Commission and its image is jeopardized when tainted officers are appointed to its office. It is clear that Chawla would take a combative posture because such beaurocrats do not believe in ethics and morals. In the best interest of our democracy and to spare Election Commission the periods of controversy, the government should swiftly come into action and sack Chawla and appoint a new Election Commission. Will the recuperating Prime Minister pay any attention to Chawla controversy!

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