Advani favours voting rights to Indians settled abroad
New York: Senior BJP leader LK Advani on Tuesday said he is in favour of granting voting rights to Indians and people of Indian-origin settled abroad.
Advani, who is leading a group of visiting Indian Parliamentarians here to attend sessions of the UN General Assembly, addressed a large gathering of Indian-Americans and community leaders at an event organised over the weekend by the Overseas Friend of BJP in Edison, New Jersey.
He said Indians living abroad have been making efforts to get voting rights and wish to participate in the electoral process of their country.
"I want that all Indians and people of Indian origin living abroad should get voting rights. It will be a very good step," Advani said, adding that this can be made possible only when there are changes in India and the country's laws.
Advani's remarks to woo overseas Indians come as India approaches 2014, when the next general elections will be held in the country.
Advani, who is visiting the US after nine years, was accompanied by his wife and daughter. He had addressed the UN General Assembly yesterday on 'Measures to eliminate international terrorism' at a session of the Sixth Committee.
Advani said he also plans to visit the 9/11 memorial during his stay in the city.
He said 9/11 stands as a significant date in history that only changed the US but the entire world. He also recalled another significant 9/11 day in 1893 when Swami Vivekananda had addressed the world religious congress in Chicago.
Advani reminisced about his interaction with Pakistan's late Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto who had told him that India has autonomous election commission and apolitical armed services because of which parliamentary democracy has flourished in India.