New Delhi, June 19: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will chair an all-party meeting today with the goal to create a conducive atmosphere for "one nation, one election". The national presidents of all political parties with electoral weight have been invited for the meet. However,two of the prominent faces in the Opposition camp, Mamata Banerjee and Arvind Kejriwal, have turned down the invite.
While the Trinamool Congress (TMC) will not be participating in the meeting, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) would be sending its national spokesperson Raghav Chadha to represent Kejriwal. Simultaneous Lok Sabha, Assembly Polls Not Possible Due to Lack of VVPAT Machines: Ex-CEC
Banerjee, the Chief Minister of West Bengal, on Tuesday said that she would not be able to attend the Centre's meeting called to discuss the issue of 'One Nation, One Election.
In her letter to Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi, she said, "Response on such a sensitive and serious subject like 'One Country and One Election' in such a short time would not do justice to the subject it deserves."
She said that the matter required consultations with the Constitutional experts, election experts, and all the party members. "Instead of doing the matter hurriedly, I would like to request you to kindly circulate a white paper on the subject to all political parties inviting their views by providing adequate time."
"If you only do so, we will be able to give concrete suggestions on this important subject," the letter further read.
Moreover, talking about the Aspirational Districts Programme, Banerjee said: "We have recently conveyed our views to NITI Aayog during its meeting, stating that we are not in support of selection of a few districts as Aspirational Districts as it would not conform to the overall objectives of achieving balanced and uniform development of all the districts of the State.
"The letter also said that the party will "whole-heartedly participate in the most befitting manner" in the celebration of 75 years of India's Independence and 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi -- which is one of the agenda in today's meeting.
Among leaders who have confirmed to attend the meeting include JD(U) chief Nitish Kumar, his YSRCP counterpart Jaganmohan Reddy, BJD president Naveen Patnaik and Shiv Sena
(With ANI inputs)