Simultaneous Polls, One Voters’ List: PM Modi Makes Another Pitch

The Quint
·2 min read

PM Narendra Modi yet again pitched the idea of “One Nation, One Election” on Thursday, saying that this was not a matter of debate but was instead what the nation needs right now. He further suggested that instead of having separate lists which are a ‘waste of time’, the Lok Sabha, Assembly, and panchayat polls should have one voters’ list, prepared by the Election Commission.

"“One nation, one election isn’t just a matter of debate, this is the need for India. Elections are held at different places every few months. The effect it has on development work is known to all. This issue needs to be studied and presiding officers can be guiding force for it.”" - Modi at the 80th All India Presiding Officers Conference, which was held virtually.

Modi further added that India has to greatly pay when politics overtake people and nation-first policies. This pitch comes in the context of the aftermath of the Bihar Assembly elections, which were the last elections held in 2020. Next year, elections in both Tamil Nadu and Bihar will take place, which are crucial states for the BJP.

Earlier, various similar pitches of the “One Nation One Election” idea have backfired and fallen through, due to backlash and criticism received from the Opposition.

The Opposition claimed that this notion was anti-democratic, impractical, and went against the ideals of the Constitution.

According to a report by NDTV, the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has alleged that the BJP is working to replace parliamentary democracy with a more presidential form of government “through the back door”.

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Since the “One Nation, One Election” idea requires the amendment of the Constitution, reaching a consensus is crucial for the government. This would require a two thirds majority in the House, which the government lacks at present.

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