Chidamabram Takes Dig at EC, Says it Has Authorised PM Modi to Announce Gujarat Poll Dates

Surabhi Shaurya
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GST Council Meet: Expect Major Changes by ‘Panic-Stricken’ Modi Government Today, Says P Chidambaram

Hours ahead of the 23rd meeting of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council meeting in Guwahati, the Congress has hit out at the Narendra Modi government.

New Delhi, October 20: Taking a dig at Election Commission (EC) for not announcing the dates for the upcoming Assembly poll in Gujarat, senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Friday hinted that the poll panel is hand-in-glove with the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party.

Taking to Twitter, Chidambaram, said that Election Commission has authorised Prime Minister to announce date of Gujarat elections at his last rally (and kindly keep EC informed). Making a sarcastic comment, the former Finance Minister said that the EC will be recalled from its extended holiday after Gujarat Govt has announced all concessions and freebie. (Also Read: Gujarat government doles out sops ahead of Assembly polls)

Reacting to Chidamabaram’s remarks, Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said, ”I think Chidambaram and the entire Congress are scared of the upcoming Gujarat Elections.”

Apart from Chidambaram, Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi had also taken several digs at the PM for the delay in the announcement. He alleged that the government is pressuring the Election Commission. The Opposition had alleged that the government put “pressure” on the poll panel to “delay” the announcement of Gujarat assembly poll schedule to enable the prime minister to act as a “false santa claus” and offer sops, use “jumlas” (rhetoric) during his October 16 visit to his home state. (Also Read: BJP Uses Famous ‘Mauka Mauka’ Advertisement to Mock Congress)

The Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) had questioned the EC’s decision of upholding the announcement of dates for Gujarat Assembly elections. Hitting back at the Oppositon parties for targeting the EC, BJP leader and Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said allegations levelled against the constitutional body were without any basis.

“It is absolutely absurd. It’s like questioning the prudence of the EC. The Congress is perhaps speaking out of its own experience where interference in the functioning of constitutional bodies used to be a thing in their rule. Such is not the case since 2014,” he had said.The Election Commission was scheduled to announce the dates for Himachal and Gujarat Assembly elections on October 12, but it only announced the dates for Himachal. Chief Election Commissioner A K Jyoti, had however, said Gujarat polls will be held before December 18, the day when the results of the Himachal Pradesh polls are to be announced.