Hyderabad: Former Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Wednesday said the country needs to have simultaneous elections for both Parliament and the assembly as frequent polls will impede the progress of the nation.
Simultaneous polls will ease the financial burden on the exchequer, he said.
Speaking to mediapersons at his residence here, Naidu also said there is nothing wrong in using the name ‘Bharat’ instead of ‘India’ as the country has been known as Bharat since time immemorial.
He, however, felt that there should be a thorough and meaningful debate on the subjects.
“Going by the Election Commission recommendations, Law Commission recommendations, Parliamentary Standing Committees’ recommendations, and also guided by cost-saving, I feel personally that we must go by the principle of ‘one nation, one election’.
“We should avoid unnecessary controversies in a democracy. There are bound to be differences sometimes. But after the debate, we must evolve consensus, then move on,” he said.
Speaking about defections of lawmakers from one party to other, Naidu said that to address the issue, the Anti-Defection Law should be amended.
According to him, there used to be simultaneous elections to both Parliament and state assemblies till 1971. However, later due to various reasons the practice ended.
The former vice president said with frequent elections, governments of the day will not be able to take firm decisions in the larger interest of the people.
“I feel personally that we must go by the principle of ‘one nation, one election’. We should avoid unnecessary controversies in a democracy. There are bound to be differences sometimes. But after the debate, we must evolve consensus, then move on,” he said.
On the reports of the possible renaming of India into ‘Bharat’, Naidu said there need not be any controversy as ‘Bharat’ has been in use from time immemorial.
He said the Constitution already mentions ‘India, that is Bharat…’
“There was so much debate and discussion in the Constituent Assembly itself. And these two (India and Bharat) are interchangeable. Bharat has been used from time immemorial,” Naidu said. Nobody should have any objection to use the name ‘Bharat’.
He said the word ‘India’ came into parlance as it was named so by ‘foreigners’. “Otherwise, culturally the country is known as Bharat,” he remarked.
On the passage of the long pending Women’s Reservation Bill, Naidu said it is long overdue and there has to be an “early conclusion” on that.