Plea for 2-child rule for poll candidates

Petitioner Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay claims that India’s population “is around 152 crore instead of 130 crore and we have marched much ahead of China”

By Our Legal Correspondent in New Delhi
  • Published 11.02.19, 12:07 PM
  • Updated 11.02.19, 12:07 PM
  • a min read
  •  
A Supreme Court injunction has been sought by petitioner Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay against people with more than two children contesting elections. Picture by Prem Singh

A petitioner has sought a Supreme Court injunction against people with more than two children contesting elections, arguing that no constitutional amendment is needed and a directive to the Election Commission will be enough.

Petitioner Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay, an advocate, says such a curb is a must to check the country’s growing population, which he has blamed for all its problems from poverty and pollution to crowded courtrooms, fanaticism and stone-throwing.

According to the public interest petition, which is yet to be heard, many states have barred people with more than two children from contesting for councillors’ or gram pradhans’ posts, and there’s no reason lawmakers should be held to a lower standard.

The petition says the curb can be inserted into those parts of the Election Symbols Order, 1968, that spell out the conditions for parties to be recognised as state or national parties, and also into the model code of conduct.

“This would not breach the principle of separation of powers because there is a legislative vacuum insofar as Parliament has not enacted any legislation in the field covered by the Symbols Order, which has been issued by the ECI in exercise of its plenary powers under Article 324,” the petition says.

Upadhyay claims that India’s population “is around 152 crore instead of 130 crore and we have marched much ahead of China”.

Upadhyay says India’s population is therefore 20 per cent of the world’s but the country has only 2 per cent of the planet’s farmland and 4 per cent of its drinking water resources.

“Our agricultural area is only one-third of China(’s) and the rate of population growth is three times that of China,” the petition says.

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