Patna: Supporting Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s idea of holding simultaneous elections, the Janata Dal (United) here on Tuesday said that the party was ready for holding assembly election with Lok Sabha in 2019.
JD (U) Bihar state president Bashistha Narain Singh agreed with PM’s logic of saving resources by holding simultaneous elections saying this would be in the interest of the country as saved money could be used for the developmental works.
"If a political consensus is built and a decision is taken to hold both elections together then the JD(U) is ready for assembly elections in 2019," he said.
Present tenure of the Bihar assembly ends in November 2020, almost one and half year after the completion of the present Lok Sabha term.
Main opposition party Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) criticised the stand taken by the JD(U) and alleged that its leader and chief minister Nitish Kumar has surrendered before the BJP on all issues.
Leader of opposition, Tejashwi Yadav, alleged that Kumar has no respect for people’s mandate. “Nitish Kumar is feeling insecure. First, he broke the Mahagathbandhan which was voted to power in 2015 and joined ranks with the BJP whom we had defeated. Now, He is not sure about his fate in 2020. This is the reason why their leaders are talking about mid-term election.”
Surprisingly, the state congress unit, struggling with internal differences, also supported Singh’s statement.
Congress state president and former education minister Ashok Chaudhary, considered close to Kumar, told reporters that there was no harm to hold simultaneous elections if leaders are on the same page. “Respective party leaders should talk to their MLAs. If they agree then there is no harm to implement this. This will certainly save public money and time of public servants,” he said.
Recently, the Niti Aayog had also favoured conducting synchronised two-phase Lok Sabha and assembly elections from 2024 in "national interest".