The new parliament building has sparked a new discussion on the next delimitation exercise, which is likely to be held after the first census to be undertaken after the year 2026, in addition to igniting a political uproar over President Droupadi Murmu's absence from the inauguration. The Delimitation Act of 2002's procedures are followed while defining the boundaries of the Parliamentary and assembly constituencies. The redesign of constituency borders is not a responsibility of the State governments.
The number of lok sabha seats is expected to increase from the current 534 to an estimated 848, which is a huge 58% jump within just 20 years since the last delimitation in 2006, according to a report released by US-based research and analysis organisation Carnegie Endowment for international Peace based on population growth projections from Census 2011 to 2031. In contrast to the former parliament building's 534 seats, the new structure has room for up to 888 members. While south indian States are anticipated to have a decline in their representation, this could result in a large increase in the number of lok sabha seats for north indian States.
For instance, whilst the five Southern States will have 165 members, Uttar Pradesh and bihar will account for a whopping 222 seats. The lok sabha now has 129 members from the five Southern States, compared to 120 from bihar and Uttar Pradesh. telangana and Andhra Pradesh, two Southern States that currently have 42 seats (17 and 25, respectively), are expected to increase to 54 seats.
In a similar vein, it is anticipated that gujarat and maharashtra will see an increase in seats from 48 and 26 to 76 and 43, respectively. Additionally, experts point out that although states that did not prioritise population management will profit from having more seats in parliament, the southern states that have managed the population increase will suffer with fewer seats in the legislature.
Therefore, the democratic structure of india and the idea of proportional representation face significant problems as a result of these developments. It is well known that the Southern States will have less influence on national issues, particularly policy issues, as a result of the widened representational divide in the Lok Sabha. Given its control over the underdeveloped Northern States as opposed to the Southern States, which have developed into the nation's economic powerhouses, the ruling bjp is eager to ensure the same. Given the apparent political mileage gained by the Northern States, the Southern States will also get less funding and initiatives.
For India's democratic representation to remain legitimate, finding workable solutions to these problems is essential. The nation's social fabric and democratic values are likely to suffer severe damage unless the opposition parties, especially those representing the Southern States and other performing States, take immediate action to compel the Centre to initiate corrective measures to safeguard the interests of the people.