Union Cabinet clears electoral reform proposals

PTI | | Updated on: Dec 15, 2021

Among the reforms, one is to voluntarily link the electoral roll with Aadhaar to root out multiple enrolments.

The Union Cabinet on Wednesday cleared a Bill on electoral reforms, including one to link the electoral roll with Aadhaar on a voluntary basis to root out multiple enrolments.

Electoral law will also be made “gender neutral” for service voters.

A man army officer’s wife is entitled to be enrolled as a service voter but a woman army officer’s husband is not, according to provisions in the electoral law. But this may change once the Bill gets the Parliament’s nod and ‘wife’ is replaced with ‘spouse’.

Another provision will allow the youth to enrol as voters on four different dates every year. As of now, only those turning 18 on or before January 1 of every year are allowed to register.

In March, then Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had told the Lok Sabha in a written reply that the poll panel has proposed to link electoral roll with the “Aadhaar ecosystem” with a “view to curb the menace of multiple enrolment of the same person at different places”.

In August 2015, a Supreme Court order made it clear that the sanction of law is required to collect Aadhaar number. Thus, the commission has proposed changes in electoral law.

The Bills on these reforms are likely to be introduced in the ongoing Winter session.

Published on December 15, 2021
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