NEW DELHI: Days before expected announcement of general elections in which PM Narendra Modi will seek a third term, India’s top election official has resigned, sparking a controversy over transparency in the electoral process.

Arun Goel’s resignation came within a month of election commissioner Anup Pandey’s retirement, leaving the ECI with only chief election commissioner.

India’s leading opposition party Congress expressed “deep concern” over Mr Goel’s resignation, with its general secretary K.C. Venugopal alleging that the government was pressurising the ECI.

Other opposition members also called on the Modi-led BJP government to come out with a “reasonable explanation”, as Presi-dent Droupadi Murmu accepted the resignation, but did not cite a reason for his departure.

Published in Dawn, March 11th, 2024

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