ECI Warns Political Parties Against Using Children in Election Campaigns

In an advisory issued for political parties on Monday, the ECI said there would be “zero tolerance” to the use of children in any manner.
ECI Warns Political Parties Against Using Children in Election Campaigns
ECI Warns Political Parties Against Using Children in Election Campaigns

Just months ahead of the Lok Sabha polls 2024, the Election Commission of India (ECI) warned political parties to refrain from using children in campaigning “in any form whatsoever” and that there would be “zero tolerance” towards this.

In an advisory issued for political parties on Monday, the ECI said there would be “zero tolerance” to the use of children in any manner including “holding a child in their arms, carrying a child in a vehicle or in a rally” during the electoral process by political parties and candidates.

The advisory issued by the poll body read, “In continuation of its earlier directives to parties and candidates to address plummeting levels of campaign discourse and to maintain respectful discourse towards Persons with Disabilities (PwDs), the Election Commission of India has issued strict directives regarding use of children in any election-related activities.”

The ECI has stated that using children to simulate a political campaign in any way, such as through poems, songs, speeches, displaying political party symbols, promoting party achievements, or criticizing opponents, is strictly prohibited.

Political parties have been advised not to use children in election campaigns in any form, including the distribution of posters/pamphlets or to participate in slogan shouting, campaign rallies, and election meetings, among other things.

According to the ECI, the instructions for “Prohibition of Child Participation in election-related activities” include: “Political leaders and candidates should not use children for campaign activities in any manner including holding a child in their arms, carrying a child in a vehicle or in rallies.”

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