“One Nation, One Election”
Recently the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) has said that, the Election Commission is ready to realize the idea of “One Nation, One Election”.
- The idea of ”simultaneous elections” (SE) was proposed by the Election Commission in the year 1983. This has also been endorsed by the Law Commission and NITI Aayog.
- Simultaneous election means holding the elections to Lok Sabha and State Legislative Assembly at the same time. Under this, the election will be arranged in such a way that the voters of the constituencies will be able to vote for both (i.e. Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha) simultaneously.
- The system of simultaneous elections continued till the year 1967. But after the dissolution of some Legislative Assemblies in the year 1968 and 1969 and the Lok Sabha in the year 1970, this arrangement broke down. Thus the elections to the State Legislative Assemblies and the Lok Sabha were conducted separately.
Arguments in favor:
- The Model Code of Conduct (MCC) remains in force for a long time due to frequent elections. This creates a situation of policy inefficiency.
- Excess expenditure is incurred by various stakeholders involved in the electoral process such as political parties, candidates, etc.
- Deployment of security forces in electoral areas reduces the number of these forces in other vulnerable parts of the country, posing a threat to internal security.
- Frequent elections cause disruption in normal life and affect essential services.
Arguments in against:
- There are doubts about the conduct of simultaneous elections, when and how the process of simultaneous elections will be completed for the first time.
- The term of the House of Lok Sabha / State Legislative Assemblies may have to be cut and extended for holding simultaneous elections. The provisions of the Constitution (Articles 83, 84, 172, 174 etc.) related to this will have to be amended.
- National issues and state issues are different. Simultaneous elections can affect the voting decisions of voters.
Source – The Hindu