Political parties should be brought under the ambit of Right to Information (RTI), says former Chief Election Commissioner T S Krishnamurthy.
Political parties should be brought under the ambit of Right to Information (RTI), says former Chief Election Commissioner T S Krishnamurthy. He also flagged practical difficulties in conducting simultaneous elections to the Lok Sabha and state Assemblies. Asked if political parties should be brought under the RTI, Krishnamurthy said, “Of course, why not? Except their strategic decisions relating to elections, all their administrative decisions, their funding and every thing should be subjected to public scrutiny.”
According to him, the policy matters of political parties relating to government formation need not come under the RTI. “What’s required in the RTI is financial aspects and administrative aspects. For example, whether they (political parties) are holding internal elections or not; these should be made available to the public; their account should be made public,” Krishnamurthy told PTI today.
On the Niti Aayog favouring simultaneous Lok Sabha and Assembly polls, he said it’s theoretically very attractive, but practically it has problems vis-a-vis its implementation. “First of all, the Constitution needs to be amended. The availability of central paramilitary forces has to be increased. If these conditions are met, it should not be difficult to hold simultaneous elections,” Krishnamurthy said.”At the moment, as the Constitution stands, it may be difficult because vote of confidence can result in the termination of legislature anytime, which means elections will have to be held depending upon the dissolution of the House,” the former CEC noted.
So, unless the provision relating to premature termination of the legislature is removed, it might be difficult to hold simultaneous elections, he pointed out. “Of course, another theory going around is you can bunch elections once in six months. Theoretically again it’s possible and there is no difficulty in conducting it. Administrative arrangements will have to be made, particularly providing extra paramilitary forces,” he said.