Indian-origin Labour MPs amplify call for general election

New Delhi, Oct 23 (IANS)
Rallying behind their leader Keir Starmer, Indian origin MPs from UK’s Labour party ratcheted-up their calls for general election, claiming that the ongoing crisis can only be resolved by a fresh vote.
The move comes as Conservatives engage in number games to formally enter the race to replace Liz Truss in Downing Street, which will be completed by October 28.
“Political paralysis has led to government paralysis. Enough is enough! General election now. After 12 years of Tory failure, Britain deserves better. We need a fresh start with @UKLabour,” Preet Kaur Gill, the MP for Birmingham Edgbaston, wrote in a series of tweets.
Gill, the MP from West Midlands with large Punjabi and Sikh diaspora communities, added that “With Keir Starmer as Prime Minister, a Labour government will provide the stability and leadership Britain needs.”
Liz Truss’ successor will be the fifth Prime Minister to lead the country since it voted for Brexit in 2016. The leadership contest is going to last only a week, unlike the last time when it took more than a month.
According to opinion polls, an early election could result in the Conservatives being annihilated after 12 years in power.
“Liz Truss will go down in history…. as one who crashed the economy during an already devastating cost of living crisis, by giving handouts to the rich. Everyone who put her in power is responsible for this. #GeneralElectionNow,” Nadia Whittome, the MP for Nottingham East, tweeted.
“Since 2019, the Tories have given us: A PM who partied while people died, breaking his own laws, and lied about it; A PM who crashed the economy within weeks by cutting taxes for the rich. Enough is enough. #GeneralElectionNow,” said Whittome, whose Punjabi Sikh father emigrated to the UK from Banga, Punjab.
Figures from People Polling shows the Conservatives would face a wipeout. Labour’s seven-day average poll share stands at 54 per cent on October 21 — up from 41 per cent on September 23. Over the same period, Tory support crashed from 33 per cent to 21 per cent.
These are the sorts of figures that would probably translate into a landslide Labour victory at a general election — were one to take place tomorrow, the Guardian reported.
“A disaster for the nation, and a disaster for our international reputation. We need a General Election,” Navendu Mishra, an MP from Stockport, said.
“Justice under the Conservatives since 2010: . 50% of courts shut down . up to 4 years wait to get court dates . record backlogs. This Government is completely letting down victims and their families in Slough and across our country,” MP from Slough, Tanmanjeet Singh Dhesi, said via his Twitter handle.
More than 649,000 people have signed a petition to the Parliament calling for general elections. In Slough constituency it has been signed by a total of 515 people.
“The British public deserve a proper say on the country’s future. We need a general election,” Thangam Debbonaire, the Labour MP born to a father of Indian and Sri Lankan heritage and English mother, said in her tweet.
The next general election in the UK is scheduled for May, 2024, under the Fixed Term Parliament Act 2011, which holds that an election must be held at least once every five years.
According to experts, the Conservatives are likely to resist early election calls unless absolutely necessary because any new election is expected to flip around the sizable 71-seat majority in the House of Commons, which the Tories enjoy at the moment.
However, the sitting prime minister has the power to call a general election early if they wish.
In 2017, then PM Theresa May called for an in a bid to bolster her majority, but the move fell flat as her party lost the majority in parliament instead.
In contrast, Boris Johnson called for an early general election in 2019, resulting in a landslide victory for the Conservative Party.
Apart from the Prime Minister, the British Constitution lays down that the monarch can also dissolve the parliament, even against the advice of his own Prime Minister — a power that was last used more than a century ago.

(Meenakshi Iyer can be reached at

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