25 February, 2021

Thailashahs Of Jharkhand

A vitiated RS poll shows that electoral pollution is all-pervasive

Rajesh Kumar Sen
Thailashahs Of Jharkhand

The recently (with)held biennial elections to the Rajya Sabha from Jharkhand are likely to go down as a first in India’s electoral history for several reasons. For one, this is the first ever “countermanding” of elections to the upper house, with the Election Commission saying that it had reason to believe that the process had been so seriously vitiated that it had no other option but to recommend to the President that the entire process be annulled. Second, for the average Jharkhandi, the EC action proved to be that unique opportunity for refurbishing the state’s tarred political image, which had become a synonym for political corruption since the JMM bribery case. The unfortunate yet popular national impression of a ‘Jharkhandi’ was that of an easily ‘bikaau’ breed of homo sapiens, around which a thriving political market for RS seats had sprung up.

Between 2002 and 2012, there have been five rounds of elections to the RS, and there have been severe complaints about the use of money...

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