* This refers to Poll expenses: EC notice to Munde (IE,June 30). It is an open secret that during elections candidates spend much more than the limit fixed. The only difference between Munde and the rest is that Munde is speaking about it openly. The Election Commission also knows this; however,at the time of elections,its interventions have been minimal. This pattern enforces a vicious cycle difficult to break. Candidates spend a lot of money while campaigning,and after winning,they not only have to recover their investment,but also make money for the next elections. Perhaps the EC should look at the real issue at hand here.
* IT IS a well-known fact that politicians spend crores of rupees to make sure they win elections. Even if there is a limit prescribed by the EC,candidates from all political parties overspend by huge margins and submit false accounts of expenses to the EC. This is routine and the EC is aware of it. Mundes revelations are not shocking,they were only truthful. The question on everyones minds is what the EC will do now to actually address the heart of the problem. If the EC wants politicians to spend within prescribed limits,it should start auditing their election expenses far more diligently. The EC has no one to blame but itself for the wool being pulled over its eyes.
Rights and duties
* APROPOS Why the central scheme needs a trim (IE,June 29),Centrally sponsored welfare schemes are planned by the Union government,though they are administered by the states. The writers have rightly pointed out that states feel a total lack of ownership over these schemes. The divergence between rights and responsibilities breeds an untenable system wherein delivery takes a hit. Central plans are based on insufficient ground-level data and understanding because these details vary from state to state.
* THIS refers to Oppn feels it has right to policy-making: Sibal (IE,June 28). I am surprised at Kapil Sibals remarks. Being a seasoned lawyer,surely the workings and norms of a democracy are not unknown to him. One wonders how he could deny the role of the opposition in policy-making. It is true that once the government is formed by the majority party,all policymaking,including legislation,is their prerogative. However,it is equally true that the opposition has the right to be heard in the legislature on issues pertaining to policy formulation. Besides,the appointment of constitutional authorities is certainly not a policy matter. A healthy democracy should encourage a prominent opposition.