Lok Sabha polls to be held in 7 phases starting from 11 April, counting on 23 May

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The Election Commission of India are holding a news conference to announce the dates for the Lok Sabha elections, scheduled to be held this year. The national poll body had said on Sunday morning that it will hold a press conference at 5 pm today.

Election Commission

Sunil Arora, the newly appointed Chief Electron Commissioner, is addressing the media.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be seeking a second term in office in this year’s polls. On the other hand, a resurgent Congress headed by Rahul Gandhi has made a strong pitch for a chance at the Centre after a gap of five years. The oldest part of India was reduced to just 44 seats in the 543 Lok Sabha in 2014.

On Saturday, the EC had issued an advisory to all political parties asking them to ‘desist from displaying photographs of defence personnel’ or ‘photographs of functions involving defence personnel in advertisements,or otherwise as part of their election propaganda/campaigning.’ This was after several election posters of the BJP showed the party desperately trying to cash in on India’s recent military skirmishes with Pakistan.

It had said, “The Ministry of Defence has brought to the notice of the Commission that the photographs of the Defence personnel are being used by the Political Parties, their leaders and candidates in advertisements as part of their election propaganda and requested the Commission to issue suitable instruction in this regard.”

Here are the highlights of today’s press conference:

  • Phase1 in 91 constituencies in 20 states
  • Phase 2 in 97 constituencies in 13 states
  • Phase 3 in 115 constituencies in 14 states
  • Phase 4 in 71 constituencies in 9 states
  • Phase 5 in 51 constituencies in 7 states
  • Phase 6 in 59 constituencies in 7 states
  • Phase 7 in 59 constituencies in 8 states
  • Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal in seven phases
  • Jammu and Kashmir in five phases
  • Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Odisha in four phases
  • Assam and Chhattisgarh will have polls in three phases
  • Karnataka, Manipur, Rajasthan and Tripura will have polls in two phases
  • Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal, Goa, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Kerala, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Punjab, Sikkim, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Uttarakhand, Andaman Nicobar, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, Daman and Diu, Delhi, Lakshdweep and Chandigarh will have polls in single phase
  • Phase 7 to be held on 19 May
  • Phase 6 polls to be held on 12 May
  • Phase 5 polls to be held on 6 May
  • Phase 4 polls to be held on 29 April
  • Phase 3 polls to be held on 23 April
  • Phase 2 polls to be held on 18 April
  • Phase 1 to be held on 11 April, counting to be held on 23 May
  • Elections will be held in seven phases
  • Media monitoring committees set up in all states to deal with the menace of paid news
  • New Android app to help citizens report model code of conduct violations, major tool for citizen empowerment
  • EVMs will have candidates’ photos as well this time around
  • 1950 is the voter helpline number
  • Code of Conduct comes into effect from today itself. Any violations will be dealt with strictly
  • There will be random VVPAT counting in one polling station in each assembly segment. Stringent security arrangements for transportation and safety of EVMs after polls
  • VVPAT will be used along with EVMs in all polling stations
  • There are approximately 10 lakh polling booths in this year’s polls
  • The EC has made extensive arrangements in preparation for 17th Lok Sabha polls
  • Current parliament’s term is ending on 3 June
  • While scheduling poll dates, examination dates, religious occasions, harvest seasons and inputs from weather department have been factored in
  • Total number of voters this year will be in the vicinity of 90 crore

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