MCC relaxed, guidelines for ex-gratia to poll staff amplified

KL Report

The Election Commission of India (ECI) has relaxed restrictions with regard to the Model Code of Conduct for the State of Jammu and Kashmir that were imposed with the announcement of Parliament Elections with effect from March 3, 2014, an official statement said on Thursday.

As per an official communication from Election Commission of India and circulated by the General Administration Department, J&K Government vide Circular No. 23-GAD of 2014 dated May 13th, it has been observed that in view of completion of polling process in the State, all normal administrative work/development activities in the State of Jammu and Kashmir can be taken up.

The ECI has further stated that the payment of ex-gratia compensation to family of polling personnel who die or sustain injuries while on election duty will be applicable to all personnel deployed in all types of election related duties, all security personnel including (CAPFS, SAPS, State Police, Home Guards, etc), any private persons like drivers, cleaners, etc. hired for deployment for election duty. The applicable period of election duty would start from the date of the announcement of the elections.

As per a separate communication of ECI and GAD, the payment of ex-gratia compensation prescribed by the Commission vide its letter date March 25, 2014 will also be applicable to the CAPs/SAPs and other security forces personnel deployed for the election duty and this will be in addition to the compensation already being paid by the MHA under extant guidelines issued by the DOP & MHA and State Governments.

The expenditure on account of payment of ex-gratia compensation to the polling personnel is wholly borne by the Government of India during the election of Lok Sabha and by the state Government during elections to the Legislative Assemblies and shared on a 50:50 basis during simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and Legislative Assembly by the Government of India and concerned State Governments. The share of the Government of India is paid by the Ministry of Law, Justice and Company Affairs (Legislative Department), the communication reads.

The communication further clarifies that in case of Lok Sabha elections, the payment of ex-gratia compensation shall be made by the State Government initially and the claims shall be made to the Government of India later on. The CEOs and DEOs shall track death/injury cases and send a consolidated report from time to time to the Commission, the communication adds.

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