The constitution bench wants to confirm whether there was any “hanky panky” as he was only provided with voluntary retirement from his service and immediately appointed to the poll body.
On November 19 Arun Goel was appointed to the commission. But as there are some harsh comments and questions on the appointment of the Election Commission of India, the Supreme Court (SC) has asked for specific files and will continue the hearing on thursday.
Here is a quick summary of the EC appointment
- Arun Goel took voluntary retirement from his service.
- He was appointed as the Election Commissioner the next day.
- The Supreme Court ordered the hearing of the Election Commission appointment to continue on Thursday.
- The court has asked the attorney general to place the file on thursday.
A five-judge bench headed by Justice KM Joseph asked the Attorney General R Venkataramani to produce the files pertaining to the appointment tomorrow.
Advocate Prashant Bhushan told the bench the post of one EC in the three-member ECI lying vacant since May after Sushil Chandra’s retirement. Rajiv Kumar succeeded Chandra and after that Anup Chandra Pandey was appointed as election commissioner. Arun Goel took a VRS from his previous service on Friday and on the very next day was appointed as the Election Commissioner.
Justice Joseph asked the attorney general what was the reason behind this hurried appointment and asked what is the mechanism that is being followed to appoint the election commissioners.
The bench said “You have produced the file on the appointment of Goel as the EC and if there is no hanky-panky you should not fear producing the file.”
Attorney general R Venkataramani said there was no mechanism behind Arun Goel’s appointment.
Arun Goel assumed charge as the new Election Commissioner of India on November 21.
An election commissioner can hold the office for six years or till the age of 65, whichever is earlier.