HomeBureaucracyEC Arun Goel resigns ahead of Lok Sabha polls

EC Arun Goel resigns ahead of Lok Sabha polls

EC Arun Goel resigns abruptly ahead of Lok Sabha elections sending shock waves. His resignation leaves CEC Rajiv Kumar alone in the commission

In a shocking turn of event, Election Commissioner Arun Goel resigned on Saturday, days before the expected announcement of the schedule for the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. He was scheduled to retire in December 2027.

Though the immediate reason for his resignation was not known, the law ministry states that Goel's resignation has been accepted by President Droupadi Murmu with effect from Saturday.

“In pursuance of clause (1) of 11 of The Chief Election Commissioner and other Election Commissioners (Appointment, Conditions of Service and Term of Office) Act, 2023, the President is pleased to accept the resignation tendered by Shri Arun Goel, Election Commissioner with effect from the 09th March, 2024,” a gazette notification by the Union Law and Justice Ministry said on Saturday.

Resignation of Arun Goel leaves Chief Election Commissoner alone in EC

The timing of Goel's resignation is debatable as with his quitting, the three-member Election Commission is left with only the chief election commissioner Rajiv Kumar. The other election commissioner in the team Anup Chandra Pandey has retired in February this year. With elections the corner, the resignation has put a big question mark on announcement of dates of Lok Sabha elections. According to sources, the election commission was likely to announce the dates next week. Now with this development, announcement may get delayed. 

The Election Commission (EC) was travelling across the country to review poll preparations and the schedule for the Lok Sabha elections was expected to be announced in a few days. On Friday, the EC held meetings with top Union and Railway officials on the deployment and movement of security personnel across India for the parliamentary elections.

Who is Arun Goel?

Goel, a retired bureaucrat, was a 1985-batch of the Punjab cadre. He had joined the Election Commission in November 2022. His transition into this position stirred debate, given that he was acting as the Union Heavy Industries Secretary and took voluntary retirement from the Administrative Services on November 18, 2022. Merely a day after his retirement, Arun Goel was appointed to the Commission, fueling controversy around his rapid move from a government role to a significant electoral position.

Appointment was challenged by ADR 

The appointment of Arun Goel has been challenged in the by Association for Democratic Reforms (ADR), an independent electoral watchdog. The NGO, in its plea, alleged that Arun Goel's appointment was “arbitrary and violative of institutional integrity and independence of Election Commission”. The appointment of Arun Goel came at the time the top court was hearing petitions regarding the appointment procedures of the Election Commission. 

Recently, in a landmark ruling on March 3, the court said the three-member EC would be chosen by a committee of the Prime Minister, the Leader of the Opposition or leader of the single-largest Opposition party in the Lok Sabha, and the Chief Justice of India till Parliament enacts a law on the matter. ADR's petition argues that the panel that appointed Goel was “deficient” and other potential candidates were left out.

The BuckStopper Reporter
The BuckStopper Reporterhttps://www.thebuckstopper.com
The BuckStopper, run by a group of seasoned journalists, holds the powerful accountable. The buck stops with them, as they cannot shrug off their official responsibilities.
- Advertisment -
Google search engine

Most Popular