Election Commissioner Achal Kumar Joti has been appointed the next Chief Election Commissioner, the Law Ministry said on Tuesday. Joti will assume office on July 6, the day the incumbent Nasim Zaidi demits office.
Joti, a 1975-batch former Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer of the Gujarat cadre, will have a short tenure of only about six months since he is scheduled to retire in January 2018 on attaining the age of 65.
Joti joined the Election Commission on May 13, 2015. Earlier, he served as the Gujarat Chief Secretary under the then Chief Minister Narendra Modi.
The next in line of succession to the top post in the poll panel is Election Commissioner Om Prakash Rawat, a 1977-batch former IAS officer of the Madhya Pradesh cadre. But he too is set to have a short tenure of around 11 months before he retires in December 2018.
As per the rules, the CEC has a tenure of six years or till he attains the age of 65, whichever is earlier. By convention, the senior most member of the commission is appointed the Chief Election Commissioner.
As the CEC, Joti will oversee the assembly elections in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh, as the terms of present assemblies in both states are ending in January 2018 and elections are to be held there before this deadline.
Rawat could oversee state elections in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh later in 2018. The next Lok Sabha elections are scheduled to be held in 2019.