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THE REPRESENTATION OF THE PEOPLE ACT, 1951

Title : THE REPRESENTATION OF THE PEOPLE ACT, 1951

Year : 1951



Any person who in connection with an election under this Act promotes or attempts to promote on grounds of religion, race, caste, community or language, feelings of enmity or hatred, between different classes of the citizens of India shall be punishable, with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both.

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1. Subs. by Act 1 of 1989, s.14( w.e.f. 15-3-1989)

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2*[(1) No person shall-

(a) Convene, old, attend, join or address any public meeting or procession in connection with an election; or

(b) Display to the public any election matter by means of cinematograph, television or other similar apparatus; or

(c) Propagate any election matter to the public by holding, or by arranging the holding of, any musical concert or any theatrical performance or any other entertainment or amusement with a view to attracting the members of the public thereto, in any polling area during the period of forty-eight hours ending with the hour fixed for the conclusion of the poll for any election in that polling area.

(2) Any person who contravenes the provisions of sub-section (1) shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.

(3) In this section, the expression "election matter" means any matter intended or calculated to influence or affect the result of an election.]

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1. Subs. by Act 21 of 1996, s. 10 (w.e.f. 1-8-1996).

2. Subs. by Act 47 of 1966, s. 55, for " a returning officer " (w.e.f. 14-12-1966).

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(1) Any person who at a public meeting to which this section applies acts, or incites others to act, in a disorderly manner for the purpose of preventing the transaction of the business for which the meeting was called together, 3*[shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to 1*[six months or with fine which may extend to two thousand rupees,] or with both".]

1*["1A) An offence punishable under sub-section (1) shall be cognizable."]

(2) This section applies to any public meeting of a political character held in any constituency between the date of the issue of a notification under this Act calling upon the constituency to elect a member or members and the date on which such election is held.

(3) If any police officer reasonably suspects any person of committing an offence under sub-section (1), he may, if requested so to do by the chairman of the meeting, require that person to declare to him immediately his name and address and, if that person refuses or fails so to declare his name and address, or if the police officer reasonably suspects him of giving a false name or address, the police officer may arrest him without warrant.

127A. 2*Restrictions on the printing of pamphlets, posters, etc.

(1) No person shall print or publish, or cause to be printed or published, any election pamphlet or poster which does not bear on its: face the names and addresses of the printer and the publisher thereof.

(2) No person shall print or cause to be printed any election pamphlet or poster-

(a) unless a declaration as to the identity of the publisher thereof, signed by him and attested by two persons to whom he is personally known, is delivered by him to the printer in duplicate ; and

(b) Unless, within a reasonable time after the printing of the document, one copy of the declaration is sent by the printer, together with one copy of the document,-

(i) Where it is printed in the capital of the State, to the Chief Electoral Officer; and

(ii) In any other case, to the district magistrate of the district in which it is printed, (3) For the purposes of this section,-

(a) Any process for multiplying copies of a document, other than copying it by hand, shall be deemed to be printing and the expression "printer" shall be construed accordingly ; and

(b) "Election pamphlet or poster" means any printed pamphlet, hand-bill or other document distributed for the purpose of promoting or prejudicing the election of a candidate or group of candidates or any placard or poster having reference to an election, but does not include any hand-bill, placard or poster merely announcing the date, time, place and other particulars of an election meeting or routine instructions to election agents or workers.

(4) Any person who contravences any of the provisions of sub- section (1) or sub-section (2) shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to six months, or with fine which may extend to two thousand rupees, or with both.]

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1. Subs. and Ins. by s. 11, ibid. (w.e.f. 1-8-1996).

2. Ins. by s. 55, ibid. (w.e.f. 14-12-1966).

3. Subs. by s. 56, ibid., for " one hundred yards " (w.e.f. 14-12- 1966).

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(1) Every officer, clerk, agent or other person who performs any duty in connection with the recording or counting of votes at an election shall maintain, and aid in maintaining, the secrecy of the voting and shall not (except for some purpose authorised by or under 93 any law) communicate to any person any information calculated to violate such secrecy.

(2) Any person who contravenes the provisions of sub-section (1) shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months or with fine or with both.



(1) No person who is 1*[a district election officer or a returning officer], or an assistant returning officer, or a presiding or polling officer at an election, or an officer or clerk appointed by the returning officer or the presiding officer to perform any duty in connection with an election shall in the conduct or the management of the election do any act (other than the giving of vote) for the furtherance of the prospects of the election of a candidate.

(2) No such person as aforesaid, and no member of a police force, shall endeavour-

(a) To persuade any person to give his vote at an election, or

(b) To dissuade any person from giving his vote at an election, or

(c) To influence the voting of any person at an election in any manner.

(3) Any person who contravenes the provisions of sub-section (1) or sub-section (2) shall be punishable with imprisonment which may extend to six months or with fine or with both.

2*[(4) An offence punishable under sub-section (3) shall be cognizable.]

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1. Subs. by Act 27 of 1956, s. 68, for clause (6)"

2. Subs. by Act 47 of 1966, s. 57, for two hundred and fifty rupees " (w.e.f. 14-12-1966).

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(1) No person shall, on the date or dates on which a poll is taken at any polling station, commit any of the following acts within the polling station or in any public or private place within a distance of 1*[one hundred metres] of the polling station, namely:-

(a) Canvassing for votes ; or

(b) Soliciting the vote of any elector ; or

(c) Persuading any elector not to vote for any particular candidate; or

(d) Persuading any elector not to vote at the election ; or

(e) Exhibiting any notice or sign (other than an official notice) relating to the election.

(2) Any person who contravenes the provisions of sub-section (1) shall be punishable with fine which may extend to two hundred and fifty rupees.

(3) An offence punishable under this section shall be cognizable.

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1. Ins. by s. 58, ibid. (w.e.f. 14-12-1966).

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(1) No person shall on the date or dates on which a poll is taken at any polling station,-

(a) Use or operate within or at the entrance of the polling station, or in any public or private place in the neigh bour- hood thereof, any apparatus for amplifying or reproducing the human voice, such as a megaphone or a loudspeaker,or

(b) Shout, or otherwise act in a disorderly manner, within or at the entrance of the polling station or in any public or private place in the neigh bour hood thereof, so as to cause annoyance to any person visiting the polling station for the poll, or so as to interfere with the work of the officers and other persons on duty at the polling station.

(2) Any person who contravenes, or willfully aids or abets the contravention of, the provisions of sub-section (1) shall be punishable with imprisonment which may extend to three months or with fine or with both.

(3) If the presiding officer of a polling station has reason to believe that any person is committing or has committed an offence punishable under this section, he may direct any police officer to arrest such person, and thereupon the police officer shall arrest him.

(4) Any police officer may take such steps, and use such force, as may be reasonably necessary for preventing any contravention of the provisions of sub-section (1), and may seize any apparatus used for such contravention.



(1) Any person who during the hours fixed for the poll at any polling station misconducts himself or fails to obey the lawful directions of the presiding officer may be removed from the polling station by the presiding officer or by any police officer on duty or by any person authorized in this behalf by such presiding officer.

(2) The powers conferred by sub-section (1) shall not be exercised so as to prevent any elector who is otherwise entitled to vote at a polling station from having an opportunity of voting at that station.

(3) If any person who has been so removed from a polling station re-enters the polling station without the permission of the presiding 95 officer, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months, or with fine, or with both.

(4)An offence punishable under sub-section (3) shall be cognizable.

132A. 1*Penalty for failure to observe procedure for voting.

If any elector to whom a ballot paper has been issued, refuses to observe the procedure prescribed for voting the ballot paper issued to him shall be liable for cancellation.

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1. Ins. by Act 4 of 1986, s.2 and Sch. (w.e.f. 15.5.1986).

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If any person is guilty of any such corrupt practice as is specified in clause (5) of section 123 at or in connection with an election, he shall be punishable with imprisonment which may extend to three months and with fine.]

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1. Subs. by Act 21 of 1996, s. 12 (w.e.f. 1-8-1996).

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(1) If any person to whom this section applies is without reasonable cause guilty of any act or omission in breach of his official duty, he shall. be punishable with fine which may extend to five hundred rupees.

1*[(1A) An offence punishable under sub-section (1) shall be cognizable.]

(2)No suit or other legal proceedings shall lie against any such person for damages in respect of any such act or omission as aforesaid.

(3)The persons to whom this section applies are the 2*[district election officers, returning officers], assistant returning officers, presiding officers, polling officers and any other person appointed to perform any duty in connection with 3* * * the receipt of nominations or withdrawal of candidatures, or the recording or counting of votes at an election ; and the expression " official duty " shall for the purposes of this section be construed accordingly, but shall not include duties imposed otherwise than by or under this Act 4***.

134A. 5*Penalty for Government servants for acting as election agent,polling agent or counting agent.

If any person in the service of the Government acts as an election agent or a polling agent or a counting agent of a candidate at an election, he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three months, or with fine, or with both.]

134B.6* Prohibition of going armed to or near a polling station.

(1) No person, other than the returning officer, the presiding officer, any police officer and any other person appointed to maintain peace and order, at a polling station who is on duty at the polling station, shall, on a polling day go armed with arms, as defined in the Arms Act, 1959, of any kind within the neighbourhood of a polling station.

(2) If any person contravenes the provisions of sub-section (1), he shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to two years, or with fine, or with both.

(3) Notwithstanding anything contained in the Arms Act, 1959, where a person is convicted of an offence under the section, the arms as defined in the said Act found in his possession shall be liable to confiscation and the licence granted in relation to such arms shall be deemed to have been revoked under section 17 of that Act.

(4) An offence punishable under sub-section (2) shall be cognizable."]

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1. The words " Electoral Registration Officers, Assistant Electoral, Registration Officers " omitted by Act 58 of 1958, s. 37.

2. Subs. by Act 47 of 1066, s. 58, for "returning officers" (w.e.f. 14-12-1966).

3. The words "the preparation of an electoral roll" omitted by Act 58 of 1958, s. 37.

4. The words and figures "or by or under the Representation of the People Act, 1950" omitted by S. 37, ibid.

5. Ins. by Act 47 of 1966, s. 59 (w.e.f. 14-12-1966).

6. Ins. by s. 13, ibid (w.e.f. 1-8-1996).

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Last updated on September, 2016

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