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``Need for a better electoral system’’

Saturday 13 August 2005

Staff Reporter

TUTICORIN: T. S. Krishnamurthy, former Chief Election Commissioner, said youths should carefully study the history of our rich culture and vast civilisation so that they can avoid committing past mistakes in order to build a strong nation.

Speaking at an interactive session on ``Role of youth in electoral democracy’’, organised by St. Mary’s College here on Friday, he said that students, future citizens, could play a proactive role in helping the country solve its financial and political problems.

They can develop inter-personal relationships and avoid harshness in words and deeds to cultivate character.

``Youngsters should lay a greater emphasis on group activities quintessential to national development’’.

About the questions raised by political parties on the credibility of electronic voting machines (EVMs), the former CEC said that the introduction of EVMs had ruled out the possibility of invalid votes and reduced the burden on the exchequer.

Answering a question posed by a student how bureaucrats felt, working under corrupt politicians, Mr Krishnamurthy, who himself was an Indian Revenue Service (IRS) officer, said the civil servants could command respect from political bosses, with their good principles. Later speaking to The Hindu , Mr. Krishnamurthy stressed the need for a better electoral system governed by rules totally changed in such a manner as to stop criminals from contesting the elections.

``The Election Commission has already submitted a report carrying 22-point recommendations to the Centre, which suggests regulation of political parties, curtailing spending on advertisements, banning convicts from contesting the elections, etc.,’’ he said, adding that if at least half of the recommendations were implemented, there would be in place a better electoral system.

See online : The Hindu

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