Narendra Modi

Opposition has no authority to question EC, says Narendra Modi

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on his third visit to poll-bound Gujarat this month on Sunday, slammed the Opposition for questioning the Election Commission’s motives in delaying the announcement of the Assembly poll schedule for the State.

“The Opposition parties have no authority to question the Election Commission over announcement of the poll schedule,” Mr. Modi said, addressing a gathering in Vadodara. The crucial polls are due later this year and the term of the Assembly ends on January 22, 2018.

In a veiled dig at Congress leader P. Chidambaram, who had criticised the EC, saying the EC had “authorised” the PM to announce the dates for Assembly polls at a rally in Gujarat, Mr. Modi said, “Someone who won during recounting is targeting the EC now.”

After the Election Commission announced the poll schedule for Himachal Pradesh, breaking the precedent of announcing polls for Gujarat and HP together, it came under sharp attack from Opposition parties. The Commission said it deferred the announcement for Gujarat as the State had sought time to complete rehabilitation work in the flood-hit northern region.

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