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Time To Revisit Anti-defection Law

MATHEW JULIUS D’COSTA, CURCHOREM
Apart from other things, the BJP pulled a masterstroke in November 2016 through demonetisation. As the top brass in the party knew well in advance about this move, the BJP had lots of purchasing power to do what they wanted. Purchase/buy anything, including MPs and MLAs and run roughshod over the sentiments of voters, by manipulations and use of money and muscle power. All money hoarded by other parties turned to scrap/paper with nowhere to go and no purchasing power. Also, at the time of elections, it was alleged that any party button you press on the electronic voting machine, the vote would go to BJP. Now for sure any other party MLA you vote and bring to power goes automatically to the BJP with nobody caring about ethics and democracy. We all know very well how the present Chief Minister was castigating Atanasio Monserrate over his numerous court cases during the election speeches in Panaji. But now Monserrate, after getting elected on Congress ticket, has joined the BJP. It is time for the Election Commission to work swiftly to enact an urgent legislation to get rid of this cancer in politics. Any MLA elected from a particular party should not be able to change sides as soon as he is elected whatsoever the reason. He has to resign and only contest after seven years from the time of resigning. This will safeguard the voters, who voted for him and it will be a step in the right direction towards democracy. Will the ruling dispensation at the national level and Goa in particular allow to pass such legislation is a million dollar question.

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