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Section 20 B – The Representation of the People Act,1951

The Representation of the People Act,1951

Section 20 B. Observers

1[Observers. (1) The Election Commission may nominate an Observer who shall be an officer of Government to watch the conduct of election or elections in a constituency or a group of constituencies and to perform such other functions as may be entrusted to him by the Election Commission.

(2) The Observer nominated under sub-section (1) shall have the power to direct the retuning officer for the constituency or for any of the constituencies for which he has been nominated, to stop the counting of votes at any time before the declaration of the result or not to declare the result if in the opinion of the Observer booth capturing has taken place at a large number of polling stations or at places fixed for the poll or counting of votes or any ballot papers used at a polling station or at a place fixed for the poll are unlawfully taken out of the custody of the returning officer or are accidentally or intentionally destroyed or lost or are damaged or tampered with to such an extent that the result of the poll at that polling station or place cannot be ascertained.

(3) Where an Observer has directed the returning officer under this section to stop counting of votes or not to declare the result, the Observer shall forthwith report the matter to the Election Commission and thereupon the Election Commission shall, after taking all material circumstances into account, issue appropriate directions under section 58A or section 64A or section 66.

Explanation. For the purposes of sub-section (2) and sub-section (3) “Observer” the shall include a Regional Commissioner or any such officer of the Election Commission as has been assigned under this section the duty of watching the conduct of election or elections in a constituency or group of constituencies by the Commission.]


1. Ins. by Act 21 of 1996, sec. 4 (w.e.f 1-8-1996)

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The Representation of the People Act,1951

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