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#161: One Nation One Election
Timeline since 1952 (5 mins read)
The year is 1950
Constitution is adopted & elections were the next step
Pt. Nehru was leader of interim govt.
At a crucial time, govt announces election dates for newly adopted democratic process
In year(s) 1952, 1957, 1962 and 1967: INDIA lined up to vote for Lok Sabha BUT
It was not JUST the LS MPs that people voted for!
The people of India lined up to also select their local MLAs as well.
You read it right. Lok Sabha & State Assembly elections were held together.
What changed after 1967?
• States reorganized
• Multiple state assemblies dissolved
• Weaker INC post PM Nehru's death in 1964
..and then started a new era!
2014, BJP wins majority with a promise of 'One Nation One Election' (ONOE)
Was it the first time? NO!
• 1983: Election Commission recommends
• 1999: Law Commission report affirms
• 2018: Law Commission backs the idea with recommendations to change the electoral laws & constitutional provisions
Cut short to 2023 and President Kovind is tasked to explore the possibility of ONOE.
What are merits and demerits of ONOE?👇🏻
• Cost effectiveness
• Increased participation in elections to all bodies
• Eases burden on administration & security forces
• Allows governments to focus on governance than being in constant election mode
• Opposition is strictly against the idea of 'ONOE'
• Fear of local problems losing essence in national scene
• Constitutional & legal amendments needed along with states' consent
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Article 83 & 172 stipulates 5 year tenure unless dissolved earlier
With ONOE, what happens if assembly/LS dissolves, when will elections be held?
This invites multiples constitutional amendments
ONOE does not square concept of ‘Federalism’ since nation is said to be ‘one’ while Article 1 envisages India as ‘Union of States’
Voters are heard more frequently in present system
Underlying issues of national/state polls are difference thus current system ensures more accountability
ONOE removes this power of voter to be heard often
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