BJP ally in Goa opposes simultaneous polls

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New Delhi, July 7 (IANS) The Goa Forward Party (GFP), a constituent of the BJP-led Goa government, on Saturday opposed the idea of simultaneous polls to the Lok Sabha and the state assemblies, saying the proposal is against regional sentiments.

“We have expressed our opposition to it. Because it goes against federalism. It would affect the federal structure of the country.

“The entire proposal is impractical. It won’t work,” GFP President Vijai Sardesai told reporters after attending a meeting convened by the Law Commission over its proposal of simultaneous polls.

He said that if the proposal was implemented, the regional issues would go to the back burner.

“The idea is good but will dilute issues of regional nature. If there is simultaneous polls, regional parties like us and the issues they spouse… Which is why we are opposing it. It is against regional sentiment,” the Town and Country Planning and Agriculture Minister said here.

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The Law Commission has invited all the national and recognised state political parties to hold consultations on Saturday and Sunday on the practicality of conducting simultaneous polls.

The Commission has prepared a draft paper on “Simultaneous Elections – Constitutional and Legal Perspectives” and has sought opinions of “all stakeholders” including political parties, constitutional experts, bureaucrats, academia and others on the paper before finalising its report and sending it to the government.

The Election Commission has repeatedly said it was capable of holding simultaneous elections provided the legal framework and logistics were in place.

Most of the political parties have, however, not warmed up to the idea citing various reasons besides arguing that it would not be good for democracy.

–IANS

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