Simultaneous poll panel to invite political parties, Law Commission for views on synchronised polls

New Delhi: A high-level committee to explore the feasibility of conducting simultaneous elections, headed by former president Ram Nath Kovind, held its first meeting here on Saturday and decided to invite political parties and the Law Commission to seek their views on holding synchronised polls in the country, a statement said.

The government had, on September 2, notified the eight-member “high-level” panel to examine and make recommendations at the earliest on the issue of holding simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha, state assemblies, municipalities and panchayats.

Home Minister Amit Shah, Law Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal, former leader of the opposition in the Rajya Sabha Ghulam Nabi Azad, former Finance Commission chairman N K Singh, former Lok Sabha secretary general Subhash C Kashyap and former chief vigilance commissioner Sanjay Kothari attended the meeting.

In addition, the committee will also invite the Law Commission for its suggestions and view points on the issue of simultaneous elections, a law ministry statement said.

Noted lawyer Harish Salve joined the meeting virtually.

Congress leader in the Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury was not present in the meeting, the statement noted.

After he was named in the committee, Chowdhury had written to Shah “declining to serve on the committee”.