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Home > Know Your Rights > Right to Contest Elections
FAQ's | Landmark Judgements | Legal Frameworks

FAQ's

Q1.  What is meant by the right to contest elections?

A1.  Right to contest elections is a political right given to all citizens of India by the Constitution of India irrespective of their religion, caste, creed or place of birth. It gives the citizens the right to be active participants in the decision making process of the country. As India is a democracy, every member of the government is elected by the people.

 

Q2.  Who can contest elections?

A2.  The Constitution of India lays down certain criteria for contesting elections. Only a citizen of India is eligible to contest elections for the Parliament or Legislative Assembly or any other democratic body. The person must be above 25 years of age before he can contest any election. He must be of sound mind and must not be an undischarged insolvent. Also, he must not have been declared ineligible to contest elections by any court of law in the country.

 

Q3.  How can I contest elections?

A3.  Ans a citizen of India you can contest elections by filing your nomination papers in the Election Commission. You can contest elections as an independent candidate or as a candidate of a political party. If you feel that you have the leadership quality and the necessary support to contest elections, then you can do so simply by filing your papers in the Election Commission. It will grant you an election symbol if you are contesting independently and if you are contesting from a party, you will use the election symbol of that party.

 

Q4.  Are persons convicted for certain offences eligible to contest elections?

A4.  There are restrictions on persons convicted for certain offences to contest elections. Convictions and sentences to imprisonment for commission of various offences attracting disqualification are specified in the Representation of People Act, 1951. There are 11 classes of offences. These include certain offences under the Indian Penal Code and other offences relate to the social, economic and religious aspects. The disqualification under this head does not specify the period of sentence. However, disqualification for a period of six years continues from the date of conviction irrespective of the period of sentence of imprisonment.

 

Q5.  If a person is falsely framed in a crime, can he contest elections?

A5.  A person can contest elections if his guilt has not been proved in the court of law. This means that a person who is falsely framed for a crime can contest elections as long as the court has not given its judgment. A pending criminal case against a person does not debar him from contesting elections. But, if he is found guilty by the court and imprisoned, then he is not eligible to contest elections.

 
 
 
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