First-past-the-post system should go: Former CEC Krishnamurthy

Former chief election commissioner TS Krishnamurthy has reignited the debate on the first-past-the-post system by proposing a minimum of 33% votes for a candidate to be declared elected.

According to the first-past-the-post system, the winner of the vote in each constituency takes the seat. Overall national vote share is irrelevant in deciding who wins a general election — it is all down to the number of seats each party wins.

Speaking to Hindustan Times, Krishnamurthy pointed to the flaws of the system and said it allows a person to win even with 20% of the votes polled and with a margin of one vote.

“The present first-past-the-post system should be replaced by providing that the winning candidate should have got minimum one-third of the votes polled to be declared as elected,” he said.

He said the first-past-the-post system encourages voting on the basis of “narrow considerations” of language, creed and caste.

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