About State Election Commissioner
The State Election Commission of Sikkim was constituted in 1992 as an independent constitutional body in pursuance of Seventy Third and Seventy Fourth Amendment of the Constitution of India and is vested the responsibility for superintendence, direction and control of preparation of electoral rolls for and conduct of all elections to local bodies in a free and fair manner.
Shri Govind Prasad Pradhan, IAS (Retd.) took over as the first State Election Commissioner and on expiry of his tenure Shri D.K.Gajmer, IAS (Retd.) succeeded Shri Pradhan. Shri G.K.Subba, IAS (Retd.) joined as the third State Election Commissioner on 4.9.2006. I as the fourth State Election Commissioner have assumed the charge of State Election Commissioner on 24.10.2011.
The Secretariat of the Commission consists of
- Secretary - 1
- Deputy Secretary - 1
- Ministerial Staff - 12
As of now the secretariat is being manned by the officers and staff recruited and appointed on deputation by the State Government. During process of elections the required additional man power is borrowed from the various departments of the State Government.
It is the Constitutional duty of the State Election Commission to complete the elections to local bodies before the expiration of the duration of five years period and it cannot put forward any excuse on unreasonable ground for postponement of local body elections.
Preparation and publication of final ward wise electoral rolls is the pre requisite of election to local bodies. The Commission appoints the District Collectors as Panchayat Electoral Registration Officers and Municipal Electoral Registration Officers for preparation of electoral rolls separately for Panchayat and Municipality elections by providing them guidelines and detailed programmes. The Commission also appoints Election Observers to ensure free and fair elections in a peaceful manner.
The Commission is vested with the prime responsibility of reorganization and delimitation of both Panchayat and Municipal areas. It is also vested with the responsibility of fixing the reservation of wards for BL, ST, SC, OBC, MBC and women candidates in consultation with the State Government.
So far the Commission has smoothly conducted three general elections to Panchayat and one general election for constitution of Municipalities in the towns of Gangtok, Singtam, Rangpo, Namchi, Jorethang, Gyalshing and Mangan in 2010.
Model Code of Conduct is enforced during elections for strict compliance to all political parties, candidates and Government departments.
During the last general elections to Panchayat in 2007 the Electoral Voting Machines were used for the first time.
Commission is now geared up to conduct the fourth general election to Panchayat sometime in September/October 2012 by providing 50% reservation of seats to women candidates.
The number of Gram Panchayat Units and Zilla Panchayat has now been increased from 161 to 176 and from 93 to 110 respectively.
(S.K.Gautam, SCS (Retd.))
State Election Commissioner