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KCRs Cabinet holds key for early polls

KCRs Cabinet holds key for early polls
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Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao is expected to hold Cabinet meeting in a couple of days even as anxiety levels both in TRS and Congress are soaring...

Hyderabad/New Delhi: Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao is expected to hold Cabinet meeting in a couple of days even as anxiety levels both in TRS and Congress are soaring sky-high over whether he would go in for early elections to the Telangana Assembly.

Though it was indicated that he would hold the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday, the latest input from the Chief Minister’s Office suggests that the meeting might be held after a couple of days. This probably is to allow himself enough time to firm up his mind over when he should go in for the elections to the Assembly.

Meanwhile, Congress leaders went into a huddle in a hotel here on Monday evening, where party Telangana state in-charge RC Kunthia discussed party’s preparedness if KCR announced dissolution of the Assembly suddenly. Kunthia is trying to make leaders of rival factions in the party to iron out their differences and prepare for elections joining hands.

The Chief Minister, winding up his three-day tour of Delhi, returned to Hyderabad on Monday evening after meeting Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union Ministers Rajnath Singh (Home), Arun Jaitley (Finance) and Nitin Gadkari. It was given to understand that the CM had raised the issue of early elections to the Telangana Assembly with the Prime Minister, seeking his help in this regard.

Excitement built up over the possibility of Cabinet meeting taking place on Tuesday as it was assumed that KCR would allow a sneak peak into his mind over what his next move would be, when General Administration Department secretary Adhar Singha issued a circular asking all the special chief secretaries, secretaries to the government to send proposals by Monday evening itself. But later in the evening, the indications that came from the CMO was that the Cabinet meeting might take place in a couple of days.

It is said that the Chief Minister initially wanted to hold the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday itself for sharing the details of his meetings with the Prime Minister and the Union Ministers but now the sources said that the Chief Minister wants to firm up his mind on when to go in for elections before calling the Cabinet meeting.

The Chief Minister is understood to have sought Prime Minister’s help in holding elections to the Telangana Assembly along with the four north Indian states, if he dissolves the Assembly leaving clear 100 days’ time for the Election Commission, the time that it needs to hold elections to the Assembly.

The Chief Minister is reportedly planning to time the dissolution of the Assembly in such a way that the Election Commission would find clubbing the elections to Telangana Assembly with north Indian states more convenient than holding elections separately at a later date.

Meanwhile, the Election Commission of India is reportedly not averse to advance the elections of any state seeking it and if the latter prefers it, it could be decided "according to the rules, only if it dissolves its Assembly and approaches us".

Sources in the Commission said here on Monday that any talk of holding uniform or simultaneous elections in the country was not possible "but if some state is willing and comes to us dissolving its Assembly, we have no alternative than to hold the elections". "We got nothing to do with the talk generated around the issue. That is the rumour mills working or overworking," the sources said.

“However, if any ruling party in a state seeks early elections, it has to dissolve its Assembly and then approach us officially. (We have to hold the elections within six months and ensure that a new Government is in place). We follow the Law and go for it. It is not that one has to seek our permission to do before dissolving the Assembly.

Everyone knows the Rules," the sources added. The sources, however, refused to comment on the preparedness and availability of the Commission to advance the elections. "We have the wherewithal to hold the elections any time.”

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