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YSR Congress supports idea of simultaneous polls

Press Trust of India  |  Amaravati 

Congress, the main opposition party in Andhra Pradesh, today supported the idea of holding simultaneous to Parliament and state assemblies, listing an equal number of advantages and disadvantages and also various challenges.

It said the 'disadvantages and challenges' need to be addressed holistically, including by amending the Constitution as necessary, by evolving a consensus so as to convert them into advantages.

YSRC's member V Vijayasai Reddy and of the Opposition in the Legislative Council, Ummareddy Venkateswarlu, presented the party's stand in a nine page letter to the Law Commission, listing the advantages, disadvantages and challenges involved, a party release here said.

The YSRC apprehended that simultaneous might reduce the importance of state and adversely affect the regional parties.

"There is a possibility this perception may be true

that even though Centre and states are equal and sovereign within their own jurisdictions, simultaneous elections may reduce the importance of state elections and regional parties would get adversely affected, which is not good for federal structure of the country," it noted.

The party also wanted the to undertake an in-depth study into the 'defects' in the first-past-the-post system and recalled the recommendations made in the Commission's 170th report in 1999 on a hybrid system.

The YSRC noted that simultaneous elections could bring down the government's expenditure, but there was no guarantee that expenditure of political parties would also come down.

While the election expenditure in 2009 was Rs 1,100 crore, it shot up to Rs 4,000 crore in 2014.

"One can imagine what would be the cost of elections in 2019," it observed.

The Law Commission's two day consultations at with all the national and state parties on the feasibility of holding simultaneous polls ended yesterday.

Four parties had supported it, while nine opposed it.

Seeking to give shape to the government's concept of "one nation, one election", the Commission's internal working paper has recommended holding the and Assembly polls simultaneously, but in two phases, beginning 2019.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Tue, July 10 2018. 19:00 IST