Hold Odisha polls simultaneously if LS election advanced: BJD to EC

The Biju Janata Dal (BJD) on Wednesday requested the Election Commission to hold Odisha Assembly polls along with the Lok Sabha elections in the event of the latter being advanced.

Party MP Pinaki Mishra, in a letter to the poll panel, said holding simulations elections will save the state Rs 1,000 crore. Elections in the state are due in April-May next year.

Odisha is among the few states where elections to both the Lok Sabha and the assembly are being held simultaneously since 2004.

If concurrent elections to Lok Sabha and the state legislative assembly is held then the expenditure is shared between central and respective state governments, he said.

BJD has maintained a equidistance both from the BJP and the Congress.

In June this year, BJD supremo and Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had supported Prime Minister Narendra Modi's proposal for holding simultaneous polls to the Lok Sabha and state assemblies.

We support Prime Minister Narendra Modi's appeal for simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and state assemblies. This will serve the country well," he had said.

Political parties are divided on the issue of holding simultaneous polls. Besides NDA constituent Shiromani Akali Dal, the AIADMK, the Samajwadi Party and the Telangana Rashtra Samiti have supported it.

The Congress, the Trinamool Congress, the Aam Aadmi Party, the DMK, the Telugu Desam Party, the Left parties and the JD(S) have opposed the proposal.

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