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Yet to hear from Centre on NRIs' voting rights: EC

Source: PTI
January 24, 2010 17:07 IST
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The Election Commission is yet to hear from the government on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's idea of overseas Indian passport holders voting in the next general elections.

"We are awaiting some communication from the government. Let me see what government writes," Chief Election Commissioner Navin Chawla said when asked about the issue.

He said he has come to know about the prime minister's comments only through media reports and that "I do not know whether he meant PIO... I have to await the communication. The Commission must consider jointly only when we receive a formal communication."

The CEC said every paper reported the issue differently. Addressing this year's Pravasi Bharatiya Divas, the prime minister said Indian passport holders living abroad could get voting rights by the time of next Lok Sabha elections in 2014.

"We are working on this issue and I sincerely hope that they will get a chance to vote by the time of the next regular general elections," Singh had told the gathering of 1,500 overseas Indians from 40 countries.

EC'S DIAMONDĀ JUBILEE CELEBRATIONSĀ 

Political leaders from across the entire spectrum will be present at tomorrow's diamond Jubilee celebrations of the Election Commission to pay tribute to the services of an institution that has strived to keep the purity of the election process in the world's largest democracy.

President Pratibha Patil will kick off the year-long celebrations at a function here to commemorate the institution
that was established a day before India became Republic on January 26, 1950.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Congress President and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Leader of Opposition in the Lok
Sabha Sushma Swaraj, BJP president Nitin Gadkari, senior BJP leader L K Advani, Left leaders Prakash Karat and A B Bardhan
besides several Union ministers will be present on the occasion.

Vice-President Hamid Ansari and Lok Sabha Speaker Meira Kumar will also attend the function. Nearly 40 heads of
electoral bodies from across the globe, majority of them from the Commonwealth countries, including South Asian nations,
have been invited.

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