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Opposition leaders question ‘one nation, one election’ move

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NEW DELHI/MUMBAI, Sep 1: Opposition leaders on Friday slammed the government’s move to set
up a committee to study the feasibility of “one nation, one election”, alleging it would pose a threat
to the federal structure of the country.
They alleged the ongoing meeting of the INDIA alliance has rattled the ruling BJP which caused the
government to set up a committee under former president Ram Nath Kovind to explore the
possibility of holding assembly and national elections simultaneously.
Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge called the government’s move a “diversion and distraction”.
“No matter how many diversions and distractions the ruling regime throws at the people, the
citizens of India shall not be betrayed anymore,” Kharge said on X, without making any direct
reference to the formation of the committee.
Kharge asserted that the countdown of this “autocratic government’s” exit has begun. “140 Cr
Indians have decided to usher change.”
Congress leader Vijay Wadettiwar said the ‘one nation, one election’ move happened because of the
INDIA alliance meeting.
Shiv Sena (UBT) leader Sanjay Raut said the country is already “one” and no one is questioning that.
“We demand fair elections, not ‘one nation one election’. This move of ‘one nation, one election’ is
being brought to divert attention from our demand for fair election,” he added.
The Rajya Sabha MP also questioned the need for a special session of Parliament, scheduled to be
held from September 18 to 22, during the Ganpati festival.
CPI leader D Raja said Prime Minister Narendra Modi always talks about India being the mother of
democracy but the government has taken a unilateral decision without discussing with other
political parties.
Priyanka Kakkar of the Aam Aadmi Party said the move betrays the “panic” in the ruling party after
they saw the unity of opposition parties under the INDIA bloc.
“First they reduced LPG prices by Rs 200 and now the panic is so much that they are thinking of
amending the Constitution. They have realised that they are not winning the upcoming elections.
“Also, can this move take care of inflation or high prices of petrol and diesel. Our Constitution was
framed after a lot of discussion and what they want to do poses a threat to federalism,” Kakkar told
Delhi minister and AAP leader Saurabh Bhardwaj said the BJP is scared of the INDIA alliance, and
hence want to hold polls early.
“The central government is afraid of the manner in which 28 parties have come together and are
meeting for a third time… They want to conduct the (Lok Sabha) elections earlier and for that, a
special session of the Parliament has been called,” he said.
Priyanka Chaturvedi of Shiv Sena (UBT) echoed them. “They announced a special session amid
festivals, what is the urgency? They (BJP) are nervous as this is their last leg, which is why they are
trying to show off power”.
Former President Ram Nath Kovind was on Friday tasked with the responsibility of heading a
committee to explore the feasibility of “one nation, one election”.
Kovind will explore the feasibility and the mechanism to see as to how the country can go back to
having simultaneous Lok Sabha and state assembly polls, as was the case till 1967.
The third meeting of the INDIA alliance was held underway at Grand Hyatt Hotel in Mumbai. As
many as 63 representatives from 28 political parties attended the meeting. (PTI)

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