New Delhi/Bhubaneswar: While the Union Government is busy in holding discussions for advance Lok Sabha election to align and sync with state assembly polls due in November-December 2018, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik’s decision over the next state poll is yet awaited.
Odisha Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister and BJD vice-president Surya Narayan Patra told media that with respect to the 5-year term of a government, BJD’s tenure will elapse in the year 2019. If the Centre will decide to conduct general elections in 2018, then the CM will decide whether the assembly poll will be conducted before or after the Lok Sabha polls.
The statutory provision that polls can be held within six months of being due is being examined as it will not require complicated measures such an amendment to the Constitution.
However, generating a wider political consensus will be a challenge. Advancing Lok Sabha election, due in April 2019, can be aligned with polls in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh and Mizoram. Barring Mizoram, BJP is in office in rest of the states.
In order to increase the number of states that could go to polls simultaneously, it has been suggested that Telangana, Andhra Pradesh and Odisha assemblies could be curtailed by a few months if the incumbent parties agreed to such a proposal. However, simultaneous elections have worked for BJD in Odisha.