It was indeed a landmark decision by the Election Commission of India (ECI) to take a firm stand in the by-election to the seat in R K Nagar fell vacant after the death of J. Jayalalithaa. The ECI cancelled the by-election based on evidence of large scale bribing of voters by the ruling AIADMK (Amma) among other parties and candidates. The apex poll body particularly highlighted the alleged role of Tamil Nadu Health Minister, whose house and premises were searched by the Income-Tax sleuths, in vitiating the electoral process in a fair manner. It was unprecedented corruption taking place captured on camera and in person and there was no other option but to cancel the election. The Income-Tax authorities have also informed that several complaints were received recently indicating that the Health Minister is the main person involved in bribing the voters in R K Nagar Assembly constituency. Incriminating documents in the form of overall money distribution charts to several leading political executives and functionaries were also available for scrutiny and verification. Further, it was evident that the by-election was contested with money and muscle power and hence there is no justification in having the polls there under such controversial circumstances. It was indeed is a dance of democracy taking place in India.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)