A committee for giving “time-bound” suggestions on the issue of ‘one nation, one election’ will be set up by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh announced after a meeting of chiefs of political parties.
In a bid to build a consensus on holding simultaneous polls to the Lok Sabha and state assemblies, Modi convened the meeting of presidents of all political parties for which 40 were invited. 21 parties attended the meeting while three shared their views on the subject in writing.
Addressing media persons after the meeting, Singh, who moderated the gathering, said most parties supported the ‘one nation, one election’ idea.
However, Left parties such as the CPI and the CPI-M had “difference of opinion” on how the exercise of joint elections will be held and that they were “not opposed (to the idea)”, he said.
Among the notable absentees were Congress president Rahul Gandhi, West Bengal Chief Minister and TMC leader Mamata Banerjee, BSP supremo Mayawati, SP president Akhilesh Yadav, DMK’s M K Stalin, TRS chief K Chandrashekhar Rao, Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray and Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Admi Party(AAP) convenor Arvind Kejriwal.
TRS was represented by its working president K T Rama Rao.
“Most of the parties supported ‘one nation one election’. There was some difference of opinion from CPI(M) and CPI that how it will be done. And both Left parties didn’t directly oppose it rather expressed apprehensions that how it will be implemented,” he said adding, “prime minister will form a committee which will hold discussions with all stake holders in a time-bound manner.”
According to sources, this panel is likely to be political in nature that will include leaders from various political parties.
Singh said Modi made it clear at the meeting that the “simultaneous polls is not government’s agenda and that it is the nation’s agenda.”
Quoting Modi, Singh said he told presidents of the political parties that if there is any difference of opinion it is welcome.