New Delhi, TNI Bureau: In a significant development, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has put an end to the long-running debate surrounding the dates of the Lok Sabha polls. During a video message directed at the G20 Tourism Ministerial meeting in Goa, he extended an invitation to G20 delegates to visit India during the upcoming 2024 general election, referring to it as a “festival of democracy in the mother of democracy.”
Modi emphasized India’s unwavering commitment to democratic values and highlighted the pivotal role of tourism in fostering unity and harmony within the country. This invitation to the G20 delegates serves as a clear indication that the polls will indeed be conducted in 2024, dismissing any speculation of early elections.
The debate regarding the timing of the Lok Sabha elections has been a subject of contention between political parties and the BJP-led union government. With the elections drawing nearer, several Opposition leaders have raised the possibility of early polls. Notably, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar expressed his opinion that the elections may be held before their scheduled time during a function. Other leaders such as Dipankar, the leader of CPI (ML) Liberation, and Debi Prasad Mishra, the vice-president of BJD, have also lent some credence to this claim in recent weeks.
However, the ruling BJD in Odisha has maintained its readiness to participate in the Lok Sabha elections whenever they may be held. The party’s stance is that if all stakeholders, including the Election Commission of India, are prepared for an early election in Odisha, the BJD is fully prepared as well, citing their strong support among the people.
In response to these assertions, BJP leaders have dismissed the possibility of early elections. Union minister Giriraj Singh mocked Nitish Kumar’s statement, sarcastically referring to him as a soothsayer who focuses on matters outside his own state while failing to effectively govern Bihar.
In light of these developments, Prime Minister Modi’s invitation to the G20 delegates holds significant weight, suggesting that the Lok Sabha elections will be held as scheduled in 2024, thereby dispelling any speculations about early polls.