One Nation One Election (1N1E)
Q: -1- What is one nation one election?
Answer: – Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been repeatedly emphasising on ‘One Nation, One Election’. It is a proposed policy of him to conduct all elections in India at once as there is an election in India almost every month.
Q: -2- Why such policy required?
Answer: – Since in India elections are being conducted very frequently due to which model code of conduct (MCC) is being imposed by the Election Commission of India (ECI) at the constituencies/jurisdictions which were gone for elections. Due to code of conduct governments cannot declare or implement new development schemes or policies till the time code of conduct has not been lifted, therefore it is obvious that it hampers or defers the development work in India.
Q: -3- How many types of elections are being conducted in India?
Answer: -Elections in the Republic of India include elections for (1) General elections i.e. Lok Sabha elections, State legislative assembly elections, Local body and gram panchayat election etc where code of conduct is being implemented during the elections.
Q: -4- Does these elections really impact the developmental work?
Answer: – There are 28 states and 8 union territories in the country and there are 205 municipal corporations, 718 districts and more than 650000 villages in India. Hence every now and then elections are conducted in some part of the country and as mentioned above when there is an election then there is a code of conduct, therefore we can conclude that, yes, these elections really impact the developmental work.
Q: -5- What is the Cost of Conducting an election?
Answer: –As per some news reports Rs 55,000-60,000 crore was spent in the Lok Sabha elections, 2019 and for assembly elections approx. Rs.3,000-10,000 Crore depending upon the size of the state also there is huge cost involved in municipal or gram panchayat elections as well.
Q: -6- Where is this huge amount is being expended?
Answer: – During the elections costs is incurred in following areas
- To Conduct Elections
- To deploy the manpower
- To Print the voter’s ID’s
- To prepare and maintain the voter’s list (Separate voters list is maintained for each election)
- To deploy security
- To deploy the EVM’s or ballot papers or ballot boxes
- Other measures as required as per the current situation (for e.g. during COVID-19 masks, sanitisers etc)
Q: -7- Who will bear this cost of conducting elections?
Answer: – For Lok Sabha elections union government will bear the cost, Similarly, state assembly elections that are held independently are completely borne by the state governments. However, if the elections to state and Lok Sabha are being conducted simultaneously, the cost is borne by both the state and the centre equally. And it is needless to say that all these amounts are collects from general public of the country as tax.
Q: -8- pros and cons of this policy
Answer: – Following are some of Pros: –
- The massive expenditure that is currently incurred for the conduct of separate elections will reduce
- The policies and developmental work will not hamper from the imposition of the Model Code of Conduct during election time
- The burden on crucial manpower that is deployed during election time. 4. Reduce populism i.e. To lure voters, political parties concede to popular demands without any consideration to public interest. Simultaneous elections reduce such opportunity for political parties.
- The simultaneous election once in five years provides stability to the governments. It allows the government to take difficult and harsh decision in larger public interest 6. May increase the voter’s turnout since all elections are conducted once in every 5 years
Following are some of Cons: –
- No guarantee that expenditure of the political parties will reduce
- Centre and States are equal and sovereign within their jurisdiction. Simultaneous elections may reduce the importance of state elections. Thus, it affects the concept of federalism
- It negates the concept of ‘no confidence motion’ – an important tool for legislative control over the executive
- Simultaneous elections with fixed tenure of five years curtail people’s right to express their confidence or displeasure on the government
- Simultaneous elections will relegate local issues or issues of state importance to the background. This completely ignores the diversity of the country
- For the free and fair conduct of the elections, security forces need to be deployed in large numbers. Given the current strength of security personnel, this may be a challenging task
- Allegedly this Policy is beneficial to the party which is in power at Centre
Q: -9- What are the Statutory hurdles in a way of implementing the one nation one elections?
Answer: – Part XV of the Constitution of India consists of Articles on Elections and there are some other Acts which govern the elections or representatives. Hence following Constitutional amendments needed for one nation one election
- Article 83 – Which deals with duration of houses of parliaments
- Article 85- Which deals with dissolution of Lok Sabha by the President 3. Article 172 – Related to State Legislatures
- Article 174- Related to dissolution of State Assembles
- Article 356 – Presidents Rule in the State
- Article 324 – Powers of Election Commission
- The Representative of People Act 1951 – Would have to be amended to build in provisions for stability of tenure for both parliament and assemblies.
Q: -10- Is this Policy detrimental for federal structure and this is beneficial to the party in power at centre as mentioned in Cons above?
Answer: – Any system or structure or policy cannot be termed as detrimental when it is beneficial to the country. By this Policy Country can save lot of resources whether it is man, money, or materials and with regard to another allegation that this Policy is beneficial to the party which is in power in centre is also does not seem to have any basis since during 2019 along with the general election some assembly elections are also conducted such as Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Odisha.
In Odisha for assembly people have voted for Biju Janata dal (BJD) whereas for Lok Sabha voted for Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP), at the same time in Andhra Pradesh previous government has changed from Telugu Desham Party (TDP) to YSR Congress Party (YSRCP).
With Above examples it is evident that the people of India are matured enough to understand the difference between assembly elections and Lok Sabha elections. At the same time people are aware about the issues involved at State level and Centre level.
Conclusion: – With above information and analysis in my opinion One Nation One Election is a welcome step and will have a long-lasting benefit to the Indian Democracy and people of this country.