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Election Commissioner Arun Goel Steps Down Before Lok Sabha Polls

Election Commissioner Arun Goel has stepped down from his position ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. President Droupadi Murmu has accepted his resignation, leaving the Election Commission of India with only Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar. Goel, a retired Punjab-cadre IAS officer, assumed office as Election Commissioner in November 2022 and was slated to become Chief Election Commissioner after Rajiv Kumar’s retirement next year.

The reasons for Goel’s resignation are not immediately clear. His departure, along with the earlier retirement of Anup Chandra Pandey, leaves the Election Commission with just one member, CEC Rajiv Kumar. Under the new law on the appointment of CEC and ECs, a search committee will shortlist candidates, and a selection committee headed by the prime minister will pick one name for appointment by the President.

Goel’s resignation has sparked concerns among political leaders, with the Congress expressing deep concern over the move. Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge questioned the timing of the resignation, while Congress general secretary organisation KC Venugopal highlighted its implications for the health of democracy. Trinamool Congress MP Saket Gokhale also raised concerns over the sudden resignation and the need for two new appointments to the Election Commission ahead of the general elections.


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