National

Simultaneous elections to erode federalism, LC told

New Delhi, Jul 8 (IANS) | Publish Date: 7/9/2018 12:44:27 AM IST
A majority of regional parties that took part in a discussion on simultaneous polls on Sunday told the Law Commission (LC) that such an exercise would undermine the regional aspirations and erode the federal set up envisioned in the Constitution.
While a few including the Samajwadi Party and Telangana Rashtra Samiti supported the idea of ‘one-nation-one-election’, some like the AAP and Janata Dal-Secular questioned the sincerity of the Centre towards poll reforms. 
The parties that came to see the law panel on Sunday included DMK, TDP, Bodoland People’s Front, Samajwadi Party, TRS, JD-S and AAP.
The Congress and the BJP were conspicuous by their absence on the second day of the discussions too.
Opposing the idea of simultaneous elections to Lok Sabha and state legislatures, TDP said the proposal was “impracticable” and “against the spirit of the Constitution and federal structure”. “As per the Constitution, it is not possible and is impracticable. For simultaneous polls, either you have to extend or reduce the tenures of some state governments, which is against the spirit of the Constitution and federal structure,” party MP K. Ravindra Kumar said.
AAP’s Ashish Khetan, after meeting the Commission, said that for simultaneous polls to happen, the Constitution of India will have to be “mutilated and rewritten completely”.
“In sum, the present proposal of the Law Commission seems to be a complete misadventure that will decimate the federal structure. I respectfully submit my party’s whole hearted opposition to the proposal,” DMK working president M.K. Stalin said in writing.
Terming it as a “futile exercise”, JD-S spokesman Danish Ali said the ruling BJP was just “testing the waters” through it with no real intentions of reforms in the electoral process.
Parties like the Trinamool Congress, CPI, AIADMK, Goa Forward Party and IUML also opposed the idea in their discussion with the law panel on Saturday. 

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