Ex-President Kovind tasked to explore possibility of ‘one-nation, one-election’

New Delhi: Recent moves by govt throw open possibility of advancing general elections and some state polls

BY | Friday, 1 September, 2023

The government has constituted a committee headed by former president Ram Nath Kovind to explore the possibility of “one nation, one election”, sources said on Friday.

The move comes a day after the government called a special session of Parliament between September 18 and 22, the agenda for which is under wraps.

Since coming to power in 2014, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been a strong votary for the idea of simultaneous polls, which include those at local bodies, citing financial burden caused by almost continuous election cycle and jolt to development work during the polling period.

Kovind too had echoed Modi’s view and expressed his support to the idea after becoming President in 2017.

Addressing Parliament, he had said in 2018, “Frequent elections not only impose a huge burden on human resources but also impede the development process due to the promulgation of the model code of conduct.”

Like Modi, he had called for a sustained debate and expressed hope that all political parties arrive at a consensus on this issue.

Assembly polls are due in five states in November-December and they will be followed by the Lok Sabha elections in May-June next year.

However, the recent moves by the government have thrown open the possibility of advancing the general elections and some state polls, which are scheduled after and with the Lok Sabha contest.

BJP chief J P Nadda on Friday met Kovind soon after the former President was tasked with the responsibility of heading a committee to explore feasibility of “one nation, one election”.

Nadda visited Kovind’s residence in the national capital this morning. However, details of the meeting could not be immediately ascertained.

Kovind will explore the feasibility and the mechanism to see as to how the country can go back to having simultaneous Lok Sabha and state assembly polls, as was the case till 1967.

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