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'Political parties not interested in electoral reforms'

Political parties not interested in electoral reforms
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Hyderabad: Former Chief Election Commissioner T S Krishnamurthy expressed anguish on Tuesday that political parties were not evincing serious interest in taking up electoral reforms and claimed that they were "happy" with the status quo.

On the ongoing Lok Sabha election campaign, he lamented that political parties have been indulging in "personal attacks" which could have been avoided.

"But no party seems to give respect to that (the model code of conduct in force)", Krishnamurthy, who oversaw the 2004 General Elections,

said.

"Unless there is some kind of respect for rule of law, we will have this kind of problems (like violations of model code and hate speeches), and I would say the need for electoral reforms is much more felt now than probably in the last elections," he said.

If political parties are serious about electoral reforms, they would have been listed in their manifesto, Krishnamurthy said. "They (political parties) are happy with the status quo".

Electoral reforms have been recommended by Law Commission, Election Commission, Goswami and Inderjit Gupta Committees, among others, but "they lie uncared," he said.

Political parties should take serious interest to take up electoral reforms in the long term interest of the country, he added.

"Political parties should realise the need for urgent electoral reforms, particularly first-past-the-post system, criminals being prevented from contesting elections, separate law for political parties; all these are important. These are the things they should attend to," Krishnamurthy said.

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