Kathmandu, June 30
The Election Commission today advised Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba to hold provincial and parliamentary elections separately but before fourth week of November to meet the constitutional deadline.
According to a press release issued by the EC, the suggestion was made by election commissioners led by Chief Election Commissioner Ayodhi Prasad Yadav when they met Prime Minister Sher Bahadur Deuba today.
According to the release, EC office bearers told the PM to hold provincial elections between October 10 and 17, National Assembly elections between October 25 and November 1 and parliamentary elections between November 17 and 24.
According to the constitution, local, provincial and parliamentary elections should be held before January 21. Election Commissioner Sudhir Shah told THT that EC office bearers suggested the dates for provincial and parliamentary elections keeping in mind weather conditions.
“Since it will be too cold after December, we suggested the government to hold polls before that,” he added.
EC office bearers also told the PM that in order to hold provincial and parliamentary elections, there was urgency to enact new laws related to provincial and parliamentary elections by mid-July. They also told the PM that the report of Constituency Delimitation Commission should be ready by July 30.
According to the release, the PM thanked EC office bearers for successfully holding the second phase of local polls and assured them that the CDC would be formed soon and laws related to provincial and parliamentary elections would be enacted soon.
Commissioner Sudhir Shah told THT that the EC would formally propose exact dates for elections by the next week.
Shah said they told the PM to form the CDC so that it could delineate constituencies for provincial and parliamentary elections. He said the CDC report was essential for preparing voter rolls for both types of elections.
EC office bearers also told the PM that it was necessary to amend Voter Rolls Act. “This act prohibits listing of the names of voters after the declaration of poll date, which we found impractical and the EC wants to amend this provision of the act,” said EC Spokesperson Surya Prasad Sharma.
Commissioner Shah said the EC would also seek the government’s help to use electronic voting machines in the upcoming elections.
“We need continuous support from the government, as well as political parties, regarding the acceptance of new technology,” Shah added.
Poll panel’s proposal
A version of this article appears in print on July 01, 2017 of The Himalayan Times.