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Hemant Kumar, Advocate demanded to implement NOTA option in Bar Association elections

Y.S.Rana | December 03, 2023 09:37 PM

CHANDIGARH: On December 15, Punjab and Haryana High Court Bar Association, Chandigarh, all the District Bar Associations and Sub-Division Bar Associations of both the states, Presidents and Vice-Presidents of the respective District/Sub-Division Bar Associations voting will be conducted for the election of posts like Secretary, Joint Secretary, Treasurer and Executive members.

Meanwhile, Advocate Hemant Kumar in Punjab and Haryana High Court in a public appeal has made to the Chairman of the Election Committee specially constituted for the High Court Bar Association elections as well as the Chairman of the Punjab and Haryana Bar Council and all the members of the Council that the ballot papers received by the lawyers for voting in the above Bar Association elections the option of NOTA (Non of the Above) should also be included.

He cited Article 19 (1) (A) of the Constitution of the country, which gives every citizen the fundamental right to freedom of speech and expression, and also the decision of the Supreme Court in September 2013 against PUCL. Vs. Government of India, on the basis of which, after the said decision of the Supreme Court, MPs/MLAs (MPs/MLAs) and various representatives of urban local bodies (municipal institutions) and Panchayati Raj institutions contesting in the elections along with the names of the candidates a button for the option of NOTA is also given on every EVM (Electronic Voting Machine) or ballot paper and if any voter finds any candidate contesting in the election, Even if he does not like the candidate, he can express his protest against all the candidates contesting the concerned election by pressing NOTA button.

Hemant's legal opinion is that similarly in Bar Association elections also, NOTA option should be given on every ballot paper. However, if a lawyer voter does not like any or all the candidates contesting for various posts of the Bar Association, then that lawyer can either abstain from voting at all or go to vote but leave the concerned ballot paper blank or Marking it wrongly can make it invalid/cancelled, however despite this it would be better if NOTA option is given on the ballot paper. So that he can directly express his opposition by voting in favor of NOTA against the candidature of all the candidates contesting the elections.

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