Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik supports suggestion of PM Narendra Modi for holding of simultaneous elections

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Bhubaneswar: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday said he supports the suggestion of Prime Minister Narendra Modi for holding of simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and the State Legislatures.

“Elections are essential in democracy. We are elected to work for the people. When elections are held throughout the year, it affects the development works. Therefore we support the suggestion of PM for simultaneous elections. This will serve the country well,” Patnaik said.

The CM’s statement came after Law Commission of India Chairman Justice BS Chauhan invited him for a meeting on July 7 and 8 to share his views on the proposal to hold simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and the State Legislatures.

In the letter, Chauhan said, “Holding of simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and the State Legislatures have been engaging the attention of political parties, government organisations, academia and the intellectuals of the country, in the recent times.”

Chauhan said the Commission, in its meeting held on 17 April 2018 decided to publish a public appeal, along with a summary of the work done so far, and placed the same on public domain to elicit the views of the stakeholders. The Commission has received many responses to this appeal and we are considering the same.

The Commission is of the view that any major law reform must be undertaken after taking the stakeholders and the general public into confidence. The Commission appreciates that the impact of holding simultaneous elections directly bears upon the public of the country and then, the political parties. While the Commission has reached out to the public already, it would like to solicit the views of the political parties, as well.

“The Commission would like to interact with your party on Saturday, 7th July or Sunday 8th July as is convenient you in the Conference Room of the Law Commission of India in New Delhi. In order to facilitate the discussions, if you think it is appropriate, you may send your thoughts to us by 30 June 2018,” the Law Commission chairman stated.

“I would request you to kindly participate in the interaction and share your valuable thoughts and suggestions, which could enable us in weighing the pros and cons of the subject. In the event you are not able to attend, kindly nominate a representative of your party who can place the views before the Commission on your behalf,” he added.

“I am sure, understanding the importance of the matter, you will communicate your concurrence at the earliest, to the Commission, so that the schedule and other details of the interaction could be communicated to you,” Chauhan further said.

Notably, Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his address during the Law Day Celebrations on 25-26 November 2018 gave a call to start a constructive discussion on the subject of holding of simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and the State Legislatures.

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