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Parties not fighting polls may lose registration: CEC

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Kolkata, March 21:

The Election Commission is seriously mulling revoking registration of political parties that fail to contest elections within a specific period of time, Chief Election Commissioner H.S. Brahma said here on Saturday.

HARISHANKAR BRAHMAAt an event on electoral reforms, Brahma said India was all set to become the first country to have biometric data with no duplicate voters.

“There are about 1,600 political parties in the country but only about 200 participate in elections. The EC is thinking very seriously that within a period of five or 10 years, if they (registered political parties) do not contest any elections, their registration should be deleted suo motu,” said Brahma.

He said many of the parties got themselves registered to avail financial benefits like exemption under the income tax.

Claiming that there were many parties that have never participated in even a municipal or panchayat polls, Brahma called for public awareness and putting pressure on elected representatives for curbing such “bogus registrations”.

Brahma said that once the voters’ list was linked to Aadhaar card, India would become the first country to have no duplicity in the list.

“Once the process of seeding the Aadhaar against the EPIC card holders is completed, it will weed out fraudulent and bogus voters ensuring there are no duplicate voters. We will do it definitely by 2015 and then India will be the only country in the world where there will be complete biometric of voters,” he said.

Brahma also called for improving ground level vigilance for controlling election expenditure.

“Control must be exercised during elections and not after elections. Muscle and money power in elections always contribute to create a non-level playing field,” he said. IANS

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