Press Statement

The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statements:

                                           On Election Commission Decision

The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) welcomes the decision of the Election Commission not to hold election to the Gujarat Legislative Assembly immediately on the ground that the law and order situation in the state is "still far from normal" and that the "wounds of communal divide following the riots have not yet healed". The Commission has decided a suitable schedule for election to the state Assembly will be fixed in November-December 2002 after completion of the exercise to correct the electoral rolls and bringing them as up-to-date as possible and creation of conditions conducive for free and fair elections in the state.

The Commission rejected the assertion of the BJP that the situation in Gujarat is quite normal and conducive to the holding of free and fair elections. The Election Commission has come to this conclusion after a thorough assessment of the ground realities in Gujarat first by sending a nine-member team from the Election Commission and thereafter by the visit of the full Election Commission. The nefarious moves of the BJP such as non-holding of assembly session in time, premature dissolution of the Gujarat Assembly, blatant attack against the Election Commission were all meant to force an immediate election in Gujarat. All such moves of the BJP got thoroughly exposed.