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Chawla holds a constitutional post: Chidambaram
Onkar Singh in New Delhi
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January 31, 2009 19:01 IST

The Centre on Saturday rejected the Bharatiya Janata Party's demand for immediate removal of Election Commissioner Navin Chawla, on the basis of Chief Election commissioner N Gopalaswami's recommendation, stating that the positions held by the three election commissioners are constitutional posts.

Replying to a question raised by, Home minister P Chidambaram [Images] said, "They hold constitutional positions and neither you nor I can change that position".

He denied media reports about the Pakistan government handing over the 26/11 probe report, on the terror attacks in Mumbai [Images] last year, to the Indian government.

"The recent visit of the Pakistan High Commissioner was a courtesy call," Chidambaram said, clarifying why the Pakistani envoy had called on him on Saturday.

Outlining the plans to beef up internal security, the home minister said that the government was planning to introduce Multi-Purpose National Identity Cards, particularly in the nine coastal states and four union territories.

Speaking on the recent controversy surrounding the Padma awards, he told the mediapersons, "Wait for the award citation. You would know about the contribution of the awardee from Jammu and Kashmir [Images]. I hope you have read the statement of Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah [Images] about the matter".

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