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One Nation, One Election: Assam CM Himanta Biswa Sarma Hails Panel; Oppn Questions Motive'

Sarma maintained that multiple elections leads to more expenditure and development also suffers.

Politics News
| Written By
Press Trust Of India
Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma (Image: PTI)

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on Friday hailed the Centre for constituting a committee to explore the feasibility of one nation, one election', while the opposition parties questioned the hurried' way in which the panel was formed and termed it an attempt to "break the country's federal structure".

"Today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has taken a landmark decision by appointing the commission. I am glad that a person of the stature of Ram Nath Kovind ji has accepted the offer of the PM," Sarma told reporters on sidelines of a programme in Nagaon.

The central government has constituted a committee headed by former president Kovind to explore the feasibility of one nation, one election', opening the possibility of Lok Sabha polls being advanced so that they could be held with a string of state assembly contests.

This comes a day after the Centre decided to call a special session of Parliament between September 18 and 22, the agenda for which is under wraps.

Sarma maintained that multiple elections leads to more expenditure and development also suffers.

"Prime Minister Modi ji has correctly realised it and is advocating a system which will take India to a different level. Expenditure (election-related) will be reduced, development will take place throughout five years and our country will become vishwaguru' if we can proceed with it," he said.

The BJP leader termed the commission as a "gift to the nation by the PM in this Amrit Kaal" and hoped that according to the recommendations of the panel, the prime minister and Parliament will take "appropriate decision".

Congress leader Debabrata Saikia, questioning the intention of the government, said "there was no need to form it so hurriedly".

"There seems to be some ulterior motive. A special session of Parliament has been called. If it (Bill for simultaneous elections) is introduced, it will definitely show that there is political motivation," he said.

The leader of the opposition in state Assembly added that the "BJP was using government machinery for furthering party agenda" and advocated any decision on such a major issue could be taken only after wide consultations and with the rules framed under the Constitution.

Vice-president of Raijor Dal Rasel Hussain alleged that the concept of one nation, one election' under current circumstances is an attempt to make the Hindi belt of north-central India as the deciding factor and break the federal structure of the country.

He expressed apprehension that once nationwide delimitation of constituencies is undertaken, the number of Lok Sabha seats in north and central parts, which forms the Hindi belt, will increase.

"As a result, issues of the Hindi belt will dominate the political discourse. But in reality, issues of one state are different from that of another. And it will lead to over-shadowing of problems of regions and states with lesser representation," Hussain claimed.

It will also be a strike on the federal structure of the country, he added. 

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