Private member’s Constitution Amendment Bill was listed on the  agenda of RS

New Delhi : A private member’s Constitution Amendment Bill was listed on the Rajya Sabha’s agenda on the last day of the winter session on Friday to prohibit misuse of the national flower, national animal and national bird or any religious symbol as the election symbol of the political parties.

Goa’s Congress member Shantaram Naik’s Bill that could not be introduced as the House was adjourned sine die much before noon seeks to amend section 324 of the Constitution to provide that “the (Election) Commission shall not allot any symbol to National Party, State Party or otherwise, any symbol which represents national flower, national animal or bird or any symbol which is connected with religious belief of any community, under the Symbols Order issued by it.”

His agenda clearly appears to hit the Bhartiya Janata Party as the statement of objects and reasons annexed to the Bill cites its ”lotus” symbol, saying “it is unfortunate that a symbol like lotus, which is a religious symbol and also a national flower, is allotted to a national party.”

Further, Naik said lotus which is a religious symbol and also BJP’s poll symbol was shockingly adopted as a logo of BRICS summit held in Goa in October. He said the poll symbol of the ruling party of the host country could not have been made the logo of the international summit and that too in Goa that may influence the state assembly elections going to be held soon. He pointed out that the lotus was prominently displayed in every nook and corner of the state during the summit.

He stressed need for review of the symbol allotment by the Election Commission. Considering that India is a highly religious minded country and its people are religious to core, the Commission, in all fairness, should not give any scope for the misuse of the symbol, he added.

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