Market fallout: early elections?

Market fallout: early elections?

New Delhi: The downturn in stock markets has again fuelled a buzz that the Congress party-led United Progressive Alliance government is keen to hold national elections in February, three months ahead of schedule because things can only get worse in the financial markets.

A member of the Congress said a decision could only be taken only after assessing the results of six state elections scheduled in the next two months.

“The outcome of the assembly polls is crucial in finalizing a date for general elections," said a Congress general secretary who did not want to be named. “But the elections can take place any time after December."

“The Election Commission (which announces the poll dates) has given us an impression that a February election is possible technically. April-May could be very hot, too," this person added.

“If the party wins the assembly elections in at least three states, it will give us a morale boost to go for parliamentary elections immediately." The Congress hopes to win at least three states as the main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party its main rival in these states, has to weather anti-incumbency in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh.

The polls to elect the 15th Lok Sabha must take place by May.