Devolution of Powers to PRIs - Letter no 6886 dated 4-7-2003 from CS Orissa
Kendu leaf Resolution letter no 24820 dated 16-12-2002
Reluctance to Surrender Power : by Biju Patnaik Ex-CM, Orissa
Collector / SP


Second State Election Commission

Article 243-K of the Constitution envisages that the superintendence, direction and control of the preparation of the electoral rolls for, and the conduct of, all elections to the Panchayats shall be vested in a State Election Commission consisting of a State Election Commissioner to be appointed by the Governor. State Government published the Orissa Panchayati Raj Election Commission (Appointment Condition of Service and Miscellaneous Provision) Rule 1994 in the extraordinary issue of Orissa Gazette on January 31st 1994. Shri D.K. Mishra, IAS (Retd.) was the First State Election Commissioner and he was succeeded by Shri Abhayananda Rath, IAS who is continuing as the State Election Commissioner at present.
The rule is given below:

No.120 Cuttack, Monday, January,31 1994 /Magha 11,1915

Panchayati Raj (GP) Department.
The 29th January,1994

S.R.O.No.108/94-In exercise of the powers conferred by clause (2) of Article 243-K of the Constitution of India, the Governor of Orissa has been pleased to make the following Rules, namely:-

1. (1) These Rules may be called the Orissa Panchayati Raj Election Commission (Appointment, Condition of Service and Miscellaneous Provisions) Rules,1994.

    (2) They shall come into force on the date of their publication in the official gazette.

2. Unless the context otherwise requires-

    (a) "Chairman" means the Chairman of the Orissa Public Service Commission;
    (b) "Commissioner" means the State Election Commissioner, appointed under Article 243 K of the Constitution;
    (c) "Civil Servant" means and includes a member of the All India Service or State Civil Service.

3. (1) No person shall be qualified for being appointed as the commissioner; if he is not-

    (a) a retired Judge of the High Court; or
    (b) a retired District Judge; or
    (c) a retired Civil Servant ; or
    (d) a Serving Civil Servant.

     (2) If a person, immediately before his appointment, was under employment as a civil Servant      under the State or Central Government, he shall be deemed to have demitted his office as      such with effect from the date of his appointment as Commissioner.

4. (1) The tenure of the office of the Commissioner shall be three years or till the Commissioner attains the age of sixty five years, whichever is earlier.

    (2) Notwithstanding anything contained in sub-rule (1), the commissioner may, by writing under his hand, addressed to the Governor, resign from his office at any time.

5. The Commissioner shall, before entering upon his office, make an oath or affirmation of his allegiance to the Constitution in the following form, namely:-
"I. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . … . . . .. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
having been appointed as the State Election Commissioner, swear in the name of God / solemnly affirm that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of India as by law established and that I will faithfully discharge the duty upon which I am about to enter."
6.(1) The Commissioner shall be entitled to a consolidated salary of Rs.8,000/- (Rupees eight thousand) per months minus pension if any including the commuted amount.

   (2) Perquisites of the office of the Commissioner shall be the same as that of the Chairman.

   (3) The commissioner shall be entitled to Travelling Allowances or Daily Allowances for his journeys on tour as per with the Chairman.

   (4) The Commissioner shall be entitled to leave and pension at the same scale, rate and in the same manner as that of the Chairman.

7. The Casual vacancy in the office of the Commissioner due to death, resignation, removal or otherwise shall be filled up by the Governor by fresh appointment in accordance with the provisions of these rules.

8. The term of office of the Commissioner shall be deemed to include any period which may elapse between the date on which the Commissioner ceases to be in office and the date from which the succeeding Commissioner enters upon office.

9.(1) If any doubt or difficulty arises in implementing these rules the Governor may, subject to the proviso to Clause(2) of article 243-K, by order, published in the Official Gazette, make orders, as may be necessary, for removing the doubt or difficulty.

   (2) Every order made under this rule shall be laid before the State Legislature as soon as may be after it is made.

2. The electoral rolls for constituencies under Zilla Parishads, Panchayt Samities and Grama Panchayats are prepared revised in accordance with the direction prescribed by the election Commission from time to time.
3. For every general election to Panchayats, the Election Commission recommends a date on which the State Government are to issue notifications calling upon the constituencies under Zilla Parishads, Panchayat Samities and Gram Panchayats to elect their members in accordance with the scheduled dates prescribed by the State Election Commission and in accordance with the Act and the Rules made thereunder.
4. During course of election, the Election Commission appoints a number of observers for observing that a free and fair election is being conducted.
5. Bye-election are generally conducted by the Election Commission in case of vacancy arising out of resignation, death or otherwise and in such contingency no notification of Government is required. The election Commission is competent to conduct the bye-election within 108 days of the date of vacancy.



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