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TDP backs One Nation One Election

By Vikas

Hyderabad, July 8: Amid raging debate across the country over the One Nation One Election, a concept mooted by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) on Sunday said it has no problem with it provided that the Election Commission (EC) is able to provide the required number of VVPAT machines to ensure fair conduct of polls.

Image for representation only

TDP, once a BJP ally, also expressed concern over the number of EVMs that the EC has if it has to conduct simultaneous elections.

"Election Commission has about 1.9 million EVMs. For simultaneous elections number of machines with VVPAT facility would be required at about 7.5 million VVPAT. It involves huge expenditure and it takes several years for manufacturing the said machines..If due to any reason, especially in case of unavailability of the required number of VVPATs when simultaneous elections will be held, EC is unable to allocate required number of VVPATs, we suggest ballot paper should be used," ANI quoted TDP as saying.

"However, as far as the Andhra Pradesh is concerned simultaneous elections are going on and we have no grievance for the same if elections are held as per schedule in 2019," it added.

Earlier, political parties in Tamil Nadu had opposed the Law commission's proposal to conduct simultaneous polls to the Lok Sabha and State Assemblies in 2019, calling it a bad idea.

Trinamool Congress had earlier described the concept of "one nation, one election" proposed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi as "impractical and unconstitutional".

Odisha Chief Minister and BJD president Naveen Patnaik had last week announced his party's support to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's 'One Nation One Poll' proposal-simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and state assemblies.

[One nation, one election: DMK says 'simultaneous elections will decimate federal structure of India']

In April, Law Commission internal working paper recommended holding of simultaneous Lok Sabha and assembly polls in two phases beginning 2019. The second phase of simultaneous polls can take place in 2024, the document states. The document has proposed amending the Constitution and the Representation of the People Act to shorten or extend the terms of state legislative assemblies to effect the move.

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