Bill to prevent criminals from contesting polls

Workshop on electoral reforms in June to elicit national consensus on the issue

Addressing reporters in Bangalore, Moily said that a two-day workshop on electoral reforms will be organised in June to elicit expert opinion and national consensus on the issue.

Expressing concern over misuse of money and entry of criminal elements in the electoral process, Moily said a comprehensive change in the electoral system was the need of the hour. He said political parties and academics would be involved in the national consultation and sought a political consensus on barring those with criminal records from contesting elections.

Communal violence

Moily said a Communal Violence Prevention Bill, making state governments directly responsible for communal violence in their states will be discussed during the next Parliament session.

Moily also ruled out providing reservation for Other Backward Castes in the Women’s Reservation Bill. He said there was no provision in the Constitution to provide for OBC reservation in the political arena. There will be no change in the Bill compared to that passed in the Rajya Sabha when it is placed before the Lower House of Parliament, Moily added.    

Replying to queries, Moily alleged that the BJP government in the State has pushed the Anti-cow Slaughter Bill with a communal agenda.

“The objective of any legislation should be the common good, but in this case the intention of the BJP government is something else,” Moily said.

Interrogating Headley

The Union Minister said that Indian investigative agencies must be provided with direct access to interrogate terror accused David Headley.

“One day or the other, the US will have to agree that Headley will have to undergo interrogation by our agencies,” Moily said.

Moily added that India had a strong case to interrogate David Headley and there was tangible evidence to prove his involvement in the November 2008 Mumbai terror attacks.
To another query, Moily said the UPA government is not against holding discussions with the BJP and Left parties which had opposed the Nuclear Liability Bill.

The Union Minister also did not rule out the possibility of raising the compensation cap of Rs 500 crore as envisaged by the Centre.

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