Model Code of Conduct (MCC): Explained

The Election Commission of India releases the guidelines to conduct free as well as fair election in India. These guidelines are also known as Model Code of Conduct. These guidelines include the overview to the political parties as well as candidates about what “do and don’t” before and during the election. In short, Model Code of Conduct is a set of instructions that should be followed by candidates and political parties. They include instructions on campaigning, general conduct, and meeting during the election.

Model Code of Conduct – Guidelines and Instructions

  1. No political party or candidate can vote on the basis of caste or religion.
  2. Political parties and candidates will have the right to criticize the opposition parties in terms of their past records and work. Parties and candidates can refrain themselves from commenting on personal life or family of any candidate.
  3. According to Model Code of Conduct, threatening voters or giving bride, organizing a public meeting within 48 hours of polling or arranging transport “from and to” the polling booths are prohibited.
  4. No political parties or candidates have the right to use the land, building, wall, compound, or vehicle without the permission of the owner in order to past pamphlets, banners, writing slogans, and so on.
  5. All the political parties or candidates should ensure that their supports neither obstruct the meeting and rally of the opposition parties nor disturb pamphlets in the meeting organized by the opposition parties.
  6. They have to take permission from the police or concerned authorities before organizing the meeting at any place.
  7. In case, if any political party or candidate organizes the procession, then it or he has to inform about its timing, path of procession, and place to the concerned authorities.
  8. As per Model Code of Conduct, political parties or candidates should ensure that the identity slip given to voters shall be printed on the white plain paper and it should not have the name or symbol of any political party or the candidate.
  9. The Voters should not be served any beverage that contains alcohol on the day of polling.
  10. The ministers of ruling party have no right to use government machinery like government employees, vehicles, government buildings during elections campaigning.
  11. In addition to this, the ruling party will not have monopoly over public place, helipads as well as aircrafts. They should not use them with the same conditions as the ruling party is following.
  12. Advertisements should not be published or displayed at the cost of public exchequer via newspaper and other media during the election.
  13. The ministers and other authorities should not sanction grants or payments out of the discretionary fund.
  14. Since the Election Commission has announced the dates of elections, the ministers should not do the following tasks, including:
  • Announce any financial grant or new scheme or promise thereof.
  • Make any commitment to construct roads, provision of drinking water facilities, and so on.
  • Lay foundation stones of project or scheme of any kind.
  • Make any ad-hoc appointment in government, public undertakings, and so on.

All these guidelines and instructions under Model Code of Conduct are designed to conduct fair and peaceful elections in the country. These guidelines are not just for political parties or candidates, but also for voters. Check out the guidelines carefully and follow them properly to let India conducts fair and peaceful elections.

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