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West Bengal Polls: "Expect Adherence to COVID-19 Protocols on Counting Day from Political Parties, Candidates and Supporters": Calcutta HC

Lawstreet Journal 2 May 2021 2:38am

Image courtesy: Lawstreet Journal Judiciary West Bengal Polls: "Expect Adherence to COVID-19 Protocols on Counting Day from Political Parties, Candidates and Supporters": Calcutta HC

On Friday (April 30th, 2021), the Calcutta High Court expressed hope that political Parties, their Candidates and the Supporters would follow the COVID-19 protocols on  May 2, 2021, the day for counting votes  in  light of the COVID-19 Pandemic situation. 

Acting Chief Justice Rajesh Bindal and Justice Arijit Banerjee presided over a public interest litigation filed regarding the adherence to the COVID-19 protocols during the counting of votes and declaration of the results of the West Bengal Assembly Election, 2021.

In his appearance before the Court, the Counsel for the Election Commission of India referred to the comprehensive guidelines issued by the Election Commission of India on April  28th,  2021.

He stated that the guidelines must be followed at the location where the votes will be counted. Furthermore, the guidelines forbid victory procession following the announcement of results. 

However, the petitioners counsel argued that in order to celebrate the victory of a particular party's candidate in an area, supporters may congregate in and around the party office, potentially violating COVID protocols.

In response, the State Advocate General Kishore Duttareferred to an order issued on April 29,2021 by the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government Of India, outlining the procedures to be followed for COVID-19 management, which are applicable throughout the country regardless of whether an election is held or not. 

It was argued that the guidelines specified in the said order prohibited social/political/sports/entertainment/academic/cultural/religious/festival-related and other gathering and congregations.

In light of these submissions, the Court stated, 

"We hope and expect that the aforesaid guidelines are followed and enforced by… Continue Reading...


Tagged: calcutta high court  
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