Scrutiny of nomination papers

Scrutiny of nomination papers

Under Section 36 of the R. P. Act, 1951 the important provisions pertaining to the scrutiny of nominations are as under:

(1) Scrutiny of nomination shall be taken only on the date specified in the notification issued under Section 30 of the Representation of the People, 1951.

(2) Scrutiny of nomination shall be taken only at the time and place mentioned in the notice issued under Section 31 of the R. P. Act, 1951.

(3) The following persons can remain present at the time of scrutiny of nominations.

  • The candidate himself

  • Election agent of the candidate

  • proposer of each candidate

  • One other person duly authorized in writing by the candidate.

In case the candidate has filed four nominations and the number of proposers is 40, only one proposer shall remain present.

(4) The Returning Officer is supposed to provide reasonable facilities for examining the nomination papers of all candidates which have been delivered in time and in the manner laid down in the section 33 of the R P Act, 1951.

(5) The Returning Officer shall then examine the nomination papers and shall decide all objections which may be made to any nomination and may, either on such objection or on his own motion, after such summary inquiry, if any, as he thinks necessary, reject any nomination on any of the following ground:

  • Whether, the candidate is possessing qualifications prescribed under law on the date of scrutiny of nominations.

  • Whether, he possess qualifications according to the Article 84, 102, 173 & 191 of Constitution as well as the provisions made in Part-II of the R. P. Act, 1951.

  • Whether the conditions are fulfilled as per Section 33 or 34 of the R. P. Act, 1951.

  • Whether the signature of the candidate or his proposer(s) in the nomination paper is genuine.

(6) The Returning Officer shall not reject any nomination paper on the ground of any defect which is not of a substantial character.

(7) The Returning Officer shall hold the scrutiny on the date appointed in this behalf and shall not allow any adjournment of the proceedings except when such proceedings are interrupted or obstructed by riot or open violence or by causes beyond his control. Provided that in case an objection is raised by the Returning Officer or is made by any other person the candidate concerned may be allowed time to rebut it not later than the next day but one following the date fixed for scrutiny, and the Returning Officer shall record his decision on the date to which the proceedings have been adjourned.

(8) The Returning Officer shall endorse on each nomination paper his decision accepting or rejecting the same and, if the nomination paper is rejected, shall record in writing a brief statement of his reasons for such rejection.

(9) Except that a person is disqualified for voting under Section 16 of the R. P. Act, 1950, for the purpose of scrutiny of nomination paper, a certified copy of an entry in the electoral roll shall be conclusive evidence of the fact that the person referred to in that entry is an elector for that constituency.

(10) Accordingly, after completion of scrutiny of all nominations the Returning Officer will prepare a list of validly nominated candidates, that is to say, candidates whose nominations have been found valid and he will publish it on his notice board.

(11) The Returning Officer is required to make scrutiny of the nomination papers as per the procedure laid down herein above. The following are the main grounds on which the nomination papers are rejected.

  • A candidate does not possess the qualification as required under Article 84 or 173 as well as Section 3, 4, 5 or 6 of the R. P. Act, 1951.

  • If one is deemed to be disqualified to contest an election under Article 102 or 191 of the Constitution as well as Section 8, 8A, 9, 9A, 10 or 10A of the R. P. Act, 1951.

  • Under Section 33 of the R. P. Act, 1951 the candidate himself or any of his proposers has not presented the nomination before the Returning Officer or specified Assistant Returning Officer.

  • If the nomination paper is delivered after due date and time fixed for filing it.

  • The nomination paper is delivered on Public Holiday.

  • The nomination paper is presented after 3.00 O'clock during the period of filling nominations.

  • The nomination paper is presented at the place other than the place specified in the notice published by the Returning Officer under Section 31 of the R. P. Act, 1951.

  • If the nomination paper is not signed by the candidate or his proposer(s) or the signature there in is not found genuine.

  • In case where the candidate or his proposers are illiterate and the thumb impression or any other mark in place of signature is not attested under Rule 2 (2) of the Conduct of Elections Rules, 1961.

  • The nomination is not filed in the form prescribed under Conduct of Elections Rules, 1961 or the same is with incomplete details.

  • In case of the seat reserved for SC or ST, it is not clearly mentioned in the nomination paper, as to which caste or tribe (as the case may be) the candidate belongs.

  • In case of a candidate, who is removed from Government service and five years from such removal are not completed, a certificate of Election Commission stating that he has not been removed on ground of corruption or disloyalty to the nation is submitted by the candidate.

(12) In case where the name of a candidate is enrolled in the constituency other than the constituency in which he desires to contest the election, has not produced the certified copy of an entry in the electoral roll for the time being in force of the respective constituency.

(13) Under Section 34 of the R. P. ACT, 1951, the required amount to contest the election as per rules is not deposited.

(14) The candidate has not taken an oath of affirmation on the date of scrutiny of nomination papers.

(15) The candidate has not mentioned his age in the nomination paper. As mentioned herein above, it is the responsibility of the Returning Officer to accept or to reject the nomination paper after its scrutiny and once the decision taken by him after scrutiny of the nomination; he has no right to change the decision. It means the decision, taken after scrutiny of the nomination papers stands as final. There after only appropriate court of law can decide to change this decision, only after completion of election.