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Report No. 170

7.2.2 Conclusion.-

Undoubtedly, the desired goal of one election in every five years cannot be achieved overnight in the given circumstances. It has to be achieved in stages. For example, the elections to Legislative Assemblies of Karnataka, Sikkim, AndhraPradesh, Maharashtra, Manipur, Orissa, Arunachal Pradesh and Bihar should be advanced, by making necessary orders, and be held along with the elections to Lok Sabha in September-October, 1999.

The next step ought to be to have the elections to the Legislative Assemblies of Haryana, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, West Bengal, Pondicherry and Assam (where elections are due in May and June, 2001) and to the Legislative Assemblies of Punjab and Uttar Pradesh (where elections are due in March, 2002) simultaneously sometime in May, 2001.Similar adjustments may have to be made in future with a view to achieve the desired goal of one election for Lok Sabha and to all the Legislative Assemblies simultaneously.

If all the political parties co-operate, the necessary steps, some of which are indicated hereinabove, can be taken without hurting the interest of any political party. May be, a constitutional amendment can solve the problem.Such an amendment can also provide for extending or curtailing the term of one or more Legislative Assemblies say for six months or so wherever it is necessary to achieve the said goal.

However, if feasible, more appropriate solution may be to hold elections to Lok Sabha/Legislative Assemblies simultaneously but to withhold the results of elections till after the expiry of term of the Legislative Assembly concerne.- the interval not exceeding six months.This suggestion was made by the Chief Minister of Karnataka who stated: "the Election Commission could not take unilateral decision but only in consultation with the State Governments concerned on holding simultaneous elections".(The Hindu, 14.5.99, p.5)

In Law Commission's view, the above suggestion needs to be seriously explored.

7.2.3. another associated idea being debated seriously in several fora is how to assure a fixed, unalterable term to Lok Sabha and the Legislative Assemblies.This is of course a major issue which can be considered if and when a review of the Constitution is undertaken. The subject cannot be dealt with within the existing constitutional parameters and hence is not dealt with in this Report.

Reform of The Electoral Laws Back

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