- VCI established in 1984 under IVC Act, 1984.
- First elections of VCI took place in 1999.
- VCI consists of 27 designates, out of which 25 are members – 14 nominated by Central Government and 11 are elected. One each Animal Husbandry Commissioner and Secretary.
- The term of VCI is three years.
- VCI Elections are conducted as per provisions of the Indian Veterinary Council Act, 1984 and the Indian Veterinary Council Rules, 1985.
- A total of 82,940 veterinarians of India will cast their votes in VCI Elections – 2020.
- A total of 92 candidates are contesting for 11 positions in VCI.
- Date of polling (online voting): 20.08.2020 (Thursday) to 22.08.2020 (Saturday) (7.00 AM to 6.00 PM each day).
- Online voting can be done at https://vcievoting.dadf.gov.in/.
- Date, time and place for counting: 24.08.2020 (Monday), 11:00 AM at Krishi Bhawan, New Delhi.
VCI elections are round the corner and there is lot of buzz regarding the same in the popular culture. Every now and then, the social media pings with the campaigns and promotions, messages related to achievements of the contestants, manifestos, and what not. Although COVID-19 have changed many conditions but using digital technologies, contestants are reaching their target voters in fraction of seconds and impressing them to give them the required mandate.
This article has been written to understand VCI Elections – 2020 as per the provisions of the Indian Veterinary Council Act, 1984. IVC Act, 1984 was enacted to regulate veterinary practice through establishment of Veterinary Council of India and State Veterinary Councils and the maintenance of registers of the veterinary practitioners and for matters connected therewith.
Background of VCI
Veterinary Council of India (VCI) is a statutory body of the Government of India which regulates veterinary practice in India. VCI was established under the Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India in 1984. It is headquartered in New Delhi and regulated by the Indian Veterinary Council Act, 1984. VCI derives funding from grants-in-aid from the Department of Animal Husbandry & Dairying, Government of India. The members of the council were nominated for the first time in 1989 and the first elections took place in 1999.
Composition of VCI
As per the Indian Veterinary Council Act, 1984, the council shall consist of 27 designated officials out of which 25 shall be members, one each ex officio Animal Husbandry Commissioner and Secretary, VCI. Among 25 members, 14 shall be nominated by the Central Government and 11 members shall be elected by the persons enrolled in Indian Veterinary Practitioners Register (IVPR). The details of the designated officials as per IVC Act, 1984 are provided hereunder:
- Five members to be nominated by the Central Government from amongst Directors of Animal Husbandry (by whatever name called) of those States to which this Act extends;
- Four members to be nominated by the Central Government from amongst the heads of veterinary institutions in the States to which this Act extends;
- One member to be nominated by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research;
- The Animal Husbandry Commissioner, Government of India, ex officio;
- One member to be nominated by the Central Government to represent the Ministry of the Central Government dealing with animal husbandry;
- One member to be nominated by the Indian Veterinary Association;
- Eleven members to be elected from amongst themselves by persons enrolled in the Indian veterinary practitioners register;
- One member to be nominated by the Central Government from amongst the Presidents of the State Veterinary Councils of those States to which this Act extends;
- One member to be nominated by the Central Government from amongst the Presidents of the State Veterinary Associations of those States to which this Act extends;
- Secretary, Veterinary Council of India, ex officio.
Further, it is provisioned in IVC Act, 1984 that the President and Vice-President of VCI shall be elected by the members from amongst themselves as per regulations. The names of persons nominated or elected as members shall be notified by the Central Government in the Official Gazette of India. For maintaining the professional integrity in the council, it is mandatory that a person aiming to contest should hold a recognized veterinary qualification included in the First Schedule or the Second Schedule of IVC Act, 1984.
Term of office
The President, Vice President and Members shall hold office for a term not exceeding three years. Members of the Council shall be eligible for re-nomination or re-election
VCI Elections – 2020 as per the Indian Veterinary Council Act, 1984 and the Indian Veterinary Council Rules, 1985
The Central Government conducts the election of 11 members of the Veterinary Council of India under clause (g) of sub-section (3) of section 3 of the Indian Veterinary Council Act, 1984 as per the Indian Veterinary Council Rules, 1985 in exercise of the powers conferred by section 4 of the Indian Veterinary Council Act, 1984 (52 of 1984).
Preparation of electoral roll
The Secretary, Veterinary Council of India prepared the electoral roll including the name, mobile numbers of every person whose name is entered in the Indian Veterinary Practitioners Register (IVPR) after the notification in rule 3 of IVC Rules, 1985 and published the draft electoral roll under rule 5 of the said rules by displaying in the offices of all State Veterinary Councils and the Veterinary Council of India.
Under rule 6 of IVC Rules, 1985, the Registered Veterinary Practitioners throughout the country were given 15 days period from the date of publication of the electoral roll in draft to claim for inclusion and updation of their name, mobile number for the purpose of online VCI election.
The Veterinary Council of India published the final electoral roll for display at the offices of the State Veterinary Councils and Veterinary Council of India and sent the final electoral roll to the Central Government. For VCI Elections – 2020, a total of 82,940 veterinarians of India have been enlisted in electoral roll as per IVPR.
Designating Returning Officer and fixing dates
The Central Government after receiving a copy of the electoral roll published under rule 8, designate or nominate a Returning Officer who shall be an officer of the Government. The Central Government may also appoint one or more person who shall be Officers of the Government, to assist the Returning Officer in the performance of his functions as Assistant Returning Officers. As per Rule 10 of the said rules, the dates for nomination/withdrawal etc. were finalized by the Returning Officer and the same was published in the Official Gazette of India (S.O. 2124 (E)), Dated 29th June, 2020. The following dates were fixed for conducting VCI elections provided in the Official Gazette of India:
- Date for filing nomination: 29.06.2020 (Monday) 9.00 AM to 06.07.2020 (Monday) 5:00 PM
- Date and time for scrutiny of nominations: 13.07.2020 (Monday) 10:00 AM in the office of the Returning Officer
- Last date for withdrawal of candidature: 05.07.2020 (Monday) 5:00 PM in the office of the Returning Officer
- Date of poll (online voting), if necessary: 20.08.2020 (Thursday) to 22.08.2020 (Saturday) (7.00 AM to 6.00 PM each day)
- Date, time and place for counting: 24.08.2020 (Monday), 11:00 AM at Krishi Bhawan, New Delhi
As per the Office Memorandum of Returning Officer, Dated 16.07.2020, 100 candidates filed their nominations through online mode/post or in person. Three candidates were rejected during scrutiny and five candidates filed their withdrawal forms. A total of 92 contesting candidates have been validly nominated and have not withdrawn their candidature within the stipulated time for contesting election of 11 members to the Veterinary Council of India.
How to vote?
The mode of voting is online. Department of Animal Husbandry & Dairying have created a dedicated portal for online voting which can be accessed at https://vcievoting.dadf.gov.in/. After creating your username and password you can vote on the aforementioned dates and time. Each voter can cast a maximum of 11 votes in favour of 11 different individuals for making them victorious as ‘Members’ of VCI.
Veterinarians are considered as ‘doctors of the poor and needy’ and represent a noble profession. Will Rogers have aptly quoted, “Personally, I have always felt that the best doctor in the world is the Veterinarian. He can’t ask his patients what is the matter… he’s just got to know.” Being representatives of such noble profession, veterinarians do face issues which need to be addressed. Extending Dynamic Assured Career Progression (DACP), Non-Practicing Allowance (NPA), time bound promotions and notional benefits, protection of veterinarians and social respect being a few of them. Let’s vote for the one who at least make distant dreams nearer and stand for the welfare of veterinarians and profession in India.
Wishing best to all the 92 contestants!
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