Twelve Opposition parties in Rajya Sabha have submitted a notice for a short duration discussion on electoral reforms for free and fair elections.
The notice does not mention EVMs on which many of the parties have been very vocal for some time now, but sources said the matter will be raised by almost all parties provided chairman M Venkaiah Naidu accepts the notice and allows the discussion.
The parties that have so far signed the notice are the Congress, Trinamool Congress, RJD, SP, BSP, AAP, CPI, CPM, DMK, Kerala Congress (Mani), IUML and NCP.
The notice, sources said, is the first of many such joint notices that the Opposition will move every week by consensus to keep the pressure up on the government. The decision to move the notice was taken on Friday during an informal opposition meeting in Parliament.
“At an informal meeting this morning, a decision was taken that every week, the opposition parties in the Rajya Sabha will jointly move for one short duration discussion and one calling attention motion. The consensus today was on electoral reforms. Though the notice only says electoral reforms, given the present state, it goes without saying that EVMs are not conducive to free and fair elections and it is high time that we returned to ballot papers. So naturally it will come up,” said an opposition MP, who is one of the signatories in the notice.
Opposition sources said that by focusing on a common issue every week, the parties could continue to keep the pressure on the government.