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Voting rights to people stationed outside their constituencies

  • Be N By IAS, Delhi
  • 18, Feb 2021
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For : GS-2: Polity and Constitution


  • The Supreme Court Thursday sought response from the Centre and the Election Commission on a plea seeking voting rights through postal ballot for people stationed outside their constituency.
  • The petition sought voting rights for all migrants whether at home or abroad.


  • SC notice to Law ministry: A bench headed by Chief Justice S A Bobde issued notices to the Ministry of Law and Justice and the poll body seeking their replies on the petition.
  • Plea: The apex court was hearing a plea filed by S Sathyan seeking voting rights for:
    • Students,
    • NRIs and
    • Other people stationed outside their constituency at the time of elections.
  • Extension of postal ballot: The PIL has sought extension of postal ballot facility or electronically transmitted postal ballot system (OTP-based e-voting) to all registered voters stationed outside their constituency.
  • The CJI then wondered if the government and Parliament have the power to fix a voting place.
  • Voting Right for: These include those who have moved out of their constituencies due to the
    • Demand of education,
    • Jobs, or
    • For any other reason.
    • These would include
    • Migrant labour,
    • Students,
    • Businessmen and
    • Those with transferable jobs which forces them to move out.
  • Violation of Constitution: “They are deprived of the access to vote which is in violation of the constitutional obligation of the state to protect the praxis of free and fair election.”
  • Freedom to vote for the candidate of one’s choice is now recognised to fall within the fundamental right to freedom of speech and expression guaranteed under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution.

SOURCE: Indian Express, Economic Times


Q. Freedom to vote for the candidate of one’s choice is recognised to fall within which of the following article of fundamental right?

  • a) Article 14
  • b) Article 19
  • c) Article 21
  • d) Article 32