Lokesh also added that he was confident of the TDP retaining power, if elections were held.

Nara Lokesh rejects Modis idea of holding state and general polls together says no one will agree
news Politics Thursday, April 27, 2017 - 08:38

Andhra Pradesh Minister for Rural Development, Panchayat Raj and IT, Nara Lokesh, dismissed Prime Minister Narendra Modi's suggestion for simultaneous elections, and said that no state would accept the proposal.

Modi had proposed to hold one election for the entire country, simultaneously holding polls for the Lok Sabha and Legislative Assemblies of the state.

“No state government will agree to go for polls one year in advance ahead of the schedule. Six months could be considered," he told media persons at the Andhra Pradesh secretariat at Velagapudi.

In November last year, Modi urged media to encourage a debate on 'constructive' subjects like simultaneous elections for the state Assemblies and Parliament.

The Prime Minister said that leaders of almost all political parties "privately say that something must be done". 

Modi said several politicians had often hesitated to speak on the issue after he raised it publicly. He, however, maintained that "such hesitation will prevail for some time, but notwithstanding such dilemma, the public discourse should continue". 

The Prime Minister said issues like the code of conduct and deployment of poll observers needed to be debated on, as various questions are raised on these matters. 

"Often, election observers are deputed for two months, and even the states where elections are not held have to spare their officials," Modi said. 

When asked about speculation that Andhra Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu was contemplating early elections for the state, the Minister denied it, and said, “The Chief Minister had asked the party to be ready to face polls anytime. It does not mean that the elections are coming early."

Lokesh also added that he was confident of the TDP retaining power, as the government was focused on the development of the state.

34-year-old Lokesh, who was elected to the state legislative council last month, is a first-time minister. He was inducted into the cabinet, in the first week of April.

This came after Naidu, distributed portfolios which he had been holding since 2014 and also reallocated the portfolios of five ministers who were dropped from the cabinet.

This was the first expansion, since the formation of the state in 2014.

While many supporters of the TDP have welcomed Lokesh well, several people were also circulating videos of his public fumbles on social media.


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