08:32 GMT24 February 2020
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    NOVO-OGARYOVO, Russia (Sputnik) - Russian President Vladimir Putin said on Thursday that the adoption of amendments to the Russian constitution should involve the direct participation of people via an all-Russian vote that will be held on a special day off.

    "Given the importance of questions that we put on the all-Russian vote and the importance of those novelties which we introduce to the basic law, I believe that people should be directly involved in making this decision," Putin said at a meeting with the working group on amendments.

    The Russian president agreed that the Russian Central Election Commission should organize the all-Russian vote.

    With regard to its date, Putin said it should be held on a working day that will be made a day off.

    "I would like to specifically draw the government's attention to it – so that this day off is not pulled out of some holidays like the May's or the New Year's," Putin noted.

    The submission of proposals on amendments is still ongoing and, according to Putin, can comfortably be extended beyond the previously announced deadline of 14 February.

    "Nothing limits us. We are not in a hurry, so we can ask our colleagues to slightly postpone the second hearing. It just should not be delayed indefinitely so that it does not become something of a permanent continuous nature," Putin said.

    Mr Putin also pushed for incorporating a periodic adjustment to pensions in the revamped constitution to take into account changes in the cost of living.

    "I think the constitution should definitely mention it," he told a panel drafting the amendments, adding this would close "loopholes" that could be used not to adjust pensions.

    Putin made a case for changing the constitution in a speech in parliament on 15 January. A working group was promptly established to prepare the changes, which will be put to a nationwide vote.

    constitution, Vladimir Putin, Russia
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