The word Code of Conduct comes into the use only during the time of the election, and in very simple words, it means a restriction on various things related to the government and lawmakers during the time of elections. But the question is why this code of conduct comes into the force and how it affects the common man.
According to Indian Express, The ECI has released the Model of Conduct for the approaching elections of 2019 in which the country shall vote in seven different phases from April 11 to May 19 and the results will be announced on May 23.
The Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora instructed the political parties to adhere to the guidelines and barred any political body from announcing policy decisions.
Nowadays, corruption and malpractices have become synonymous with the word ‘Politics’. Many politicians are hungry for power and fame and often go into great extent for obtaining it even if it means to adopt illegal methods for doing so.
The clashes between various parties, false allegations, spreading propaganda for benefits, false promises are just some of the practices in the field of Politics. Amongst all this, Corruption has still ranked the top of the list.
While these have become a part and parcel of the political world, things seem to go out of hand during the time of elections. Politicians are hungry and driven for power and often target common people to manipulate them to stand for their party. This manipulation may be in various forms but most of the times are illegal.
This is why the Election Commission of India gives out guidelines to conduct fair elections and prevent such happenings during the process.
The Model Code of Conduct is a set of instructions that are to be abided by all political parties during the elections. They are do’s and don’ts that are to be carried out for effective election. This Model of Conduct will be in operation during the entire process of election and consists of rules on campaigning, general behavior, and even meetings of the politicians.
Coming into effect from today and in operation till the time the results are announced, the code of conduct prevent any sort of malpractices to be carried out during the elections.
The Political parties are not allowed to influence the voters based on caste or neither any religious sentiment nor they can announce projects or schemes or advertise themselves on official mass media to improving their chances of victory.
This code also bars politicians from meeting up government officials with the intentions of election work or use the government vehicles or machinery for election-work purposes.
Stating that the political parties be only judged on the basis of their work, past record, it prevents politicians from using any religious places of worship for spreading election propaganda.
The code of conduct allows 48-hour of “election-silence” wherein no meetings or campaigns are to be held before the closing poll to ensure the public to reflect upon before casting votes.
More often the politicians use this code to delay the government work. But what actually the code states is that there should be no sort of government influence- be it monetary or repute wise- to lure the voters.
Although this Model code of conduct is not very much legally binding but is abided by the Politicians voluntarily. There have been cases of violations of this conduct in the past which were dealt with. But in all this process, it is the common man who reaps the advantage.
During the elections, the police forces are vigil about illegal practices and money laundering in the state. In Goa, the elections approach has forced the police to keep a check on the casinos, narcotics and matka trade within the state as this is where major money laundering occurs.
According to an article published by Herald Goa, it is surprising how during the elections, cases of petty crimes drastically drop and the trade of liquor and other goods undergo security checks but all of this is absent during the rest of the year.
This heightened alert and security provided for the public must be practiced all year round and not just during the elections. Stating the reason for the code, the administration runs smoothly but one must argue for the administration to function effectively and smoothly regardless.