EC Proposes Parties To Reveal Cost Of Freebies & How To Fund Those
Bhubaneswar: In order to strengthen the model code of conduct (MCC) for political parties and leaders, the Election Commission has proposed to supplement the existing guidelines so that they have to clarify how they would meet the poll promises, particularly freebies, to the voters.
While the existing guidelines under the MCC require the political parties and candidates to explain the rationale for promises made by them as well as the ways and means to finance such promises, the Commission has observed that the declarations are ambiguous and do not provide adequate information to the voters to exercise informed choice in an election.
The Commission said it cannot overlook inadequate disclosures on election promises and its adverse impact on financial sustainability as empty poll promises have far-reaching ramifications.
“While the Commission agrees in principle with the point of view that framing of manifestos is the right of political parties, it cannot overlook the undesirable impact of some of the promises and offers on the conduct of free and fair elections and maintaining a level playing field for all political parties and candidates,” the Election Commission said in a press release.
The poll panel has proposed to furnish a proforma for the recognised national and state political parties for furnishing details of financial implications of promises made in the election manifesto and the ways and means to meet them. It stated that each state chief secretary and the Union finance secretary would provide details of tax and expenditure in the specified format.