Basic ethics in elections are on decline: Faizan Mustafa

Hyderabad: The contestants in general elections are violating the poll code with impunity while the Election Commission remains a mute spectator, leading legal luminary and Vice-Chancellor of NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad, Prof Faizan Mustafa, said in a lecture here on Friday, February 23.

Speaking at the valedictory session of the two-day conference on “Electoral Politics in Contemporary India: Emerging Trends,” Prof Mustafa pointed out at another common problem during elections.  He said that people do not read the manifestoes of the political parties but largely vote on the basis of speeches made by politicians. There is also no system of questioning the political parties on the non-fulfilment of the promises that were made during the election campaigns.

Unless people exercise their rights, the political system in the country would not change, he said.

The valedictory session was presided over by the academic and political activist G Hargopal. Noted scribe and writer Kingshuk Nag said that the practice of secularism has been a farce across all political parties. 

Earlier a panel discussion was held on "Media and Elections" which was chaired by Mr. Nag.  It was addressed by Prashant Jha of Hindustan Times, Arfa Khanam of the Wire, Iqbal Ahmad of BBC and Niloufar Suhrawardy, a senior journalist.

Dr S.Y. Quraishi, former Chief Election Commissioner, inaugurated the conference on Thursday. He spoke in detail about the changes the Commission is bringing about in holding elections.

Prof. Asmer Beg of Aligarh Muslim University discussed the key trends of Indian politics after the 2014 elections.

Prof. Shakeel Ahmad, Pro Vice-Chancellor, MANUU, in his presidential address lamented the decline in value-based politics and education levels of elected representatives.