EC procuring EVMs, VVPATs for 2019 polls

Simultaneous elections are not possible without a legal framework as any extension or curtailment of the term of Assemblies will require a constitution amendment, Chief Election Commissioner O.P. Rawat said on Tuesday, a day after the BJP made a fresh push to hold Lok Sabha and Assembly polls together. In underscoring the need for a legal framework, Mr. Rawat virtually ruled out holding simultaneous polls any time soon.

If simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and State Assemblies are held in 2019, the EC will require nearly 24 lakh EVMs, double the number required to hold only the Parliamentary polls. During their discussion with the Law Commission on May 16 on the issue of holding simultaneous polls, the Election Commission officials had said they would need around Rs. 4,500 crore to buy nearly 12 lakh additional EVMs and an equal number of VVPATs. BJP president Amit Shah had written to the Law Commission on Monday in support of holding the Lok Sabha and Assembly polls simultaneously.

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