Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad levelled allegations that Modi government had brought in the Citizenship Amendment Act to win Jharkhand and Delhi elections. India, a heterogenous society with a myriad states, has elections right throughout the year. So is Ghulam Nabi Azad’s allegation an assertion that we need One Nation One Election concept to be implemented?
Bengaluru: Senior Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad, in no uncertain terms, has alleged that the Narendra Modi government enacts laws with an eye on elections. To drive home his point, he pointed out that Narendra Modi and Union home minister Amit Shah campaigned during the Maharashtra and Haryana using the issue of abrogation of articles 35A and 370, and during the Jharkhand elections, they campaigned, keeping the issue of Citizenship Amendment Act as the prop.
In both the states, he added that the BJP had failed to win the confidence of the electorate.
During one of his interviews to a TV channel, Amit Shah, when he was asked this specific question (of enacting laws to garner votes in poll-bound states) he emphatically replied that the next elections were 4 years away and asserted that the BJP didn’t play electoral policies.
Well, on a more serious note, does Azad’s allegation point to a greater challenge that India faces? Just to jog your memories, it was Narendra Modi who advocated, a few years ago, that there is a vital need for simultaneous elections across India. At that point in time, or even to this day, the opposition parties have not extended their support to the PM to implement this concept of One India One Election.
India is a massive country, with myriad states and Union territories. Right throughout the year, elections are due in some other state or the other. As this article is being written, the Election Commission is expected to announce the dates for Delhi polls anytime. Another state Bihar too will be going for polls. In the year 2021, as many as four states – West Bengal, Kerala, Tamil Nadu and Assam – will be going for polls.
This being the case, should the centre never frame policies at all? Is it customary that every policy that is conceived and implemented be viewed through the prism of polls and appeasement?
Though there is the Election Commission of India, a constitutional body that conducts elections, it is certainly a herculean task to hold polls all the time. Therefore, the Modi government has revived this idea of concomitant elections.
It is a concept in which elections are held concurrently or ubiquitously for both the Lok Sabha and the state elections. The voting can be held on the same day or can be held in a phased manner.
Though Modi has held an all-party meet to glean through various aspects, one must note that the concept of One Nation One Election was in existence until the year 1967, after which, due to dissolution of various state governments in the following years, it became impractical to hold elections simultaneously.
Last Updated 10:44 AM IST