Election Commission is ready to hold joint election in 2019: Election Commissioner OP Rawat

  • Election Commission is ready to hold joint election in 2019: Election Commissioner OP Rawat
06-10-2017 | Pratidin Bureau. |

Hinting at a landmark electoral reform in the country, Election Commissioner of India, OP Rawat, on Thursday said the commission is ready to hold a joint election, Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha together, in 2018 if more machines are available. Supplementing the proposal put forward by the Modi government, Rawat told the media, “Simultaneous elections are possible in the country if more machines are available.”

Earlier, the Centre has proposed for holding a unified election across all levels, panchayat, Vidhan Sabha and Lok Sabha.

Now, the question has cropped up whether the government will push for a constitutional change to hold a joint election in all states and union territories of the country or only organize the Lok Sabha election with the poll bound states in 2019.

Assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Tripura, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Mizoram are scheduled to be held in 2018.

OP Rawat said the poll body requires nearly 24 lakh EVMs and 16 lakh VVPAT (paper trail) machines for joint polls. He also said there was a need for a consensus which could be a difficult task.

While as per electoral law, elections can be held six months prior to the end of the term of a House, the term of the House cannot be extended except during proclamation of Emergency. Ensuring that the term of houses in states is either extended or curtailed to match with that of the Lok Sabha will require amendment to three to four articles of the Constitution.

President’s Rule in states and ‘no confidence motions’ against governments are situations which may occur. The government will have to see how to deal with such situations when it wants all states to have elections along with the Lok Sabha.

Tags : Election Commission Joint election General election 2019 Election Commissioner OP Rawat

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