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One Nation, One Election: All parties will be consulted, says Ghulam Nabi Azad

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Srinagar: Former Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is a member of the high-level committee formed to explore the feasibility of simultaneous polls, on Monday said all political parties will be consulted before a decision on ‘one nation, one election’ is taken.

“Only a preliminary meeting has been held. It was an introductory meeting. I do not think there is any urgency in implementing it, as some people are saying, because consultations are to be held with national parties, regional parties, recognised parties . Many people have to be called (for consultation),” Azad told reporters here.

The veteran politician, who was named in the panel headed by former president Ram Nath Kovind, said, “It is also wrong to think that the committee will take a decision on its own. Everyone’s opinion will be sought.”

On the Women’s Reservation Bill, the former J-K president and chairman of the Democratic Progressive Azad Party (DPAP) said the bill has come 30 years late but lauded the political parties for giving up rigidity to pass the legislation in both houses of the parliament.

“It has come late. It should have come 15 to 20 years earlier It should have come even 30 years earlier. The earlier attempts like during the UPA, some of the constituent parties were against it.

“There was no unanimity. Now, at least there is unanimity, and it was passed in both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. The government and all the parties, which did not stick to their rigidity and supported the bill this time, deserve to be congratulated for it,” he added.

On the “delay” in holding assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir, the former chief minister said polls were the essence of democracy and have to be held, even though these have been delayed.

“It is unthinkable that there will be no elections. If there are no elections, there will be no democracy.

“And the elections are not only due but overdue, especially the assembly elections. Parliament elections are held on time, there has been no difficulty but it has been a long time since assembly polls were held,” he said.

Press Trust of India

Press Trust of India is lead news agency of India

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