West Bengal Governor approves Rajiva Sinha’s name as State Election Commissioner

| Updated: 08 June, 2023 2:56 pm IST

KOLKATA: West Bengal Governor has given his consent to the appointment of Rajiva Sinha as the State Election Commissioner (SEC), following the recommendation made by the state government. Sinha, who previously served as the chief secretary of West Bengal from September 2019 to September 2020, is now poised to take on the crucial role of overseeing elections in the state.

The State Election Commission is an independent and constitutional body responsible for ensuring that elections are conducted in a free, fair, and unbiased manner in both states and union territories across India. It was established on May 26, 1993, after the enactment of the 73rd and 74th Amendments to the Constitution of India, with the aim of conducting elections for rural and urban local bodies.

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The approval of Rajiva Sinha’s appointment as the SEC comes after an initial exchange between Governor CV Ranan Bose and the state government. The governor sought an explanation from the state regarding the nomination of Sinha and the file proposing his name was sent back for further examination. However, subsequent to this scrutiny, the governor granted consent for Sinha’s appointment, paving the way for him to assume the responsibilities of the SEC.

The appointment of the SEC holds great significance, particularly as West Bengal gears up for the upcoming panchayat elections. These grassroots elections play a crucial role in shaping local governance and selecting representatives at the village level. With Rajiva Sinha at the helm of the State Election Commission, there is an expectation of his vast administrative experience and understanding of the state’s dynamics contributing to the smooth conduct of these elections.

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Earlier in a press conference, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee highlighted the urgency in filling the position of the SEC during a press conference. She expressed concern over the pending file at the Raj Bhavan, emphasizing the need for a State Election Commissioner, especially with the panchayat elections on the horizon. Banerjee requested the Governor’s Office to release the files promptly, urging for a swift and sensible resolution.

The current State Election Commissioner, Sourav Kumar Das, whose tenure expired in March of this year, had been granted an extension for two months.

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