Govt, Opposition lock horns in RS over electoral reforms

The Asian Age.

India, Politics

Trinamul MP Derek O’Brien demanded that the elections be held with ballot papers.

Derek O’Brien

New Delhi: TMC MP Derek O’Brien on Wednesday targeted the Centre over electoral reforms and demanded that the elections should be held with ballot papers.

He said, “the time has come to form laws for electoral reforms in the country.” While pointing out to various issues like “misuse” of data by political parties in the elections, he said Parliament should also look at the process to appoint election commissioners.

“Parliament is above the EC. Either we amend the constitution.. We will have to see how election commissioners are elected,” he said.

Ram Gopal Yadav of SP demanded that “we should go back to ballot paper” as people do not have faith on EVMs.

He sought one voter list for panchayat, assembly and general elections.

The Central government countered the Opposition claims.

Replying to the discussion, Union law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad acc-used the Opposition of adopting double standa-rds on the issue of EVMs, saying leaders from their parties had become CMs and PMs through the same voting process.

“If people of this country elect Narendra Modi, then EVM is faulty. What is this logic?” he asked the Opposition members, wh-ile replying to the debate on electoral reforms. “This hypocrisy and double standards impinge upon the polity of the country.”

Senior Congress member Kapil Sibal charged that the BJP incurred huge expenditure on publicity and misused social media during the recent general elections.

He alleged that the EC did not take any action for violation of its advisory related to naming defense forces for wooing voters during the poll campaign.