Amend Article 356 of constitution, demands CPI(M)

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 Allahabad, Feb 25:  The Communist Party of India (Marxist) today demanded an amendment in Article 356 of the Constitution to check its misuse by ruling parties.

''Article 356 has been frequently misused by the ruling parties, be it the Congress or Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP). Both the parties have misused it for their self interests...,'' CPI (M) Polit Bureau member Brinda Karat contended, while talking to mediapersons here.

Ms Karat said there ought to be a detailed discussion on Article 356, only then it would be made as to clear when it should be used. ''Whether any party supports us or not, we will continue to raise our voice against it misuse.'' Ms Karat only stressed the need for more funds for the agriculture sector.

''Agriculture is going through a critical stage. Therefore, I am expecting an allocation of more funds for this sector in the Union Budget, which will be presented in the next two days,'' she added.

''Only a few people are opposing the Singur Project in West Bengal. There, the farmers are with the government and I wish other states also adopt this model of the West Bengal government,'' she said.

Replying to a question, she said the Election Commission (EC) had already held free and fair elections in West Bengal and Bihar. I am sure the EC would also make arrangements for the forthcoming Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh,'' she said.

Welcoming the holding of UP Vdhan Sabha polls in seven phases, she said ''the EC is a constitutional body and everyone should have faith in it.'' The CPI (M) is fully prepared for the elections and has decided to field 15 candidates in the Assembly elections, she said.


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