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Congress Leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury Says No To ‘One Nation One Election’ Panel

The panel has been mandated by the Law Commission to recommend ways to implement simultaneous elections in the country.

Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury
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Congress Lok Sabha leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury has declined to be part of the One Nation One Election panel.

The panel has been mandated by the Law Commission to recommend ways to implement simultaneous elections in the country.

The eight-member committee was notified on Saturday and was given the task to weigh every aspect if simultaneous polls are held.

In his letter addressed to Union home minister Amit Shah, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury said he has no hesitation in declining to serve on the committee.

He said the terms of reference have been prepared in such a manner that the conclusion is confirmed -- that is simultaneous elections will happen going forward. 

"I have no hesitation whatsoever in declining to serve on the committee whose terms of reference have been prepared in a manner to guarantee its conclusions. It is, I am afraid, a total eyewash," he said.

"Moreover, the sudden attempt to thrust a constitutionally suspect, pragmatically non-feasible and logistically unimplementable idea on the nation, months before the general elections, raises serious concerns about ulterior motives of the government," he added.

"Furthermore, I find that the current LOP in the Rajya Sabha has been excluded. This is a deliberate insult to the system of Parliamentary democracy. In these circumstances, I have no option but to decline your invitation,"he said.

The government has notified the eight-member committee to examine and make recommendations at the earliest on the issue of holding simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha, state assemblies, municipalities and panchayats.

Under the chairmanship of former president Ram Nath Kovind, the law ministry has formed a high-level committee to study the proposal of simultaneous elections in the country.

Union home minister Amit Shah, Congress Lok Sabha leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, former leader of opposition Rajya Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad, former chairman of 15th Finance Commission NK Singh, former Lok Sabha general secretary Subash Kashyap, senior advocate Harish Salve, former chief vigilance commissioner Sanjay Kothari will be members of the committee.

Minister of state (law) Arjun Ram Meghwal will attend the meetings of the high-level committee as a special invitee.
 

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