One Nation one Election
One Nation one Election

One nation-one election committee will start its function immediately, the law ministry mandated in its notification on Saturday.

On Saturday, the law ministry announced the creation of a high-level committee with Ram Nath Kovind as its head to study the idea of simultaneous elections. The committee will be made up of Amit Shah, the union home minister, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, the leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha, Ghulam Nabi Azad, the former opposition leader in the Rajya Sabha, NK Singh, the former general secretary of the Lok Sabha, Subash Kashyap, senior attorney Harish Salve, and the former chief vigilance commissioner, Sanjay Kothari. Arjun Ram Meghwal, minister of state (law), will be a special invitee to the meetings of the high-level committee.

What will the One Nation, One Election Committee look into?

In accordance with the notification’s mandate, the committee will look into and recommend specific amendments to the Constitution, the Representation of the People Act, 1950, the Representation of the People Act, the Municipalities and Panchayats Act, and other statutory provisions in order to hold simultaneous elections for the House of the People (Lok Sabha), State Legislative Assemblies, Municipalities, and Panchayats.

In the event of a hung House, the passage of a resolution of no confidence, or a defection, the committee will examine the situation and provide recommendations for potential remedies. The eight-member committee will make recommendations regarding the timing of the simultaneous elections as well as a framework for their synchronization. According to the notification, “the committee will investigate the manpower and logistical requirements, including EVMs, VVPATs, etc., for holding such simultaneous elections.”

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What is ‘one nation-one election’?

  • Up to 1967, there were concurrent elections for the Lok Sabha and the state assemblies.
  • However, several legislative bodies were prematurely disbanded in 1968 and 1969, and the Lok Sabha was dissolved in 1970.
  • This compelled the government and the states to modify their election schedules.
  • The law commission proposed simultaneous elections to election expenses in its 170th report.
  • According to the law commission report, “the rule ought to be one election every five years for Lok Sabha and all the Legislative Assemblies.”

The terms of at least 10 state assemblies will end before or around the time when the Lok Sabha election 2024 is to be held. While Assembly elections in five states — Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Telangana, Mizoram and Chhattisgarh — are due by the end of this year, polls in Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Odisha, Sikkim and Jharkhand are likely to be held along with the Lok Sabha elections.

The discussion over one nation, one election started afresh after the government called a special session of Parliament from September 18 to 22 without citing any reason.