Election Commission of India has announced schedule for parliamentary elections. The elections will be held in seven phases starting from April 11. Announcing this chief election commissioner Sunil Arora told media persons on Sunday that the results would be declared on May 23.
Andhra Pradesh, Orissa, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim will have their Assembly elections held simultaneously with Lok Sabha polls.
However, there is no word on Assembly elections in Jammu and Kashmir.
Jammu and Kashmir is presently under President’s rule.
Full team of Election Commission of India, had visited the state on March 4 and sought opinion of the political parties regarding assembly elections. Almost all the parties had urged the Commission to hold assembly elections simultaneously with the parliamentary election in the state.
The contest for 543 Lok Sabha seats pits the ruling BJP’s Narendra Modi against Rahul Gandhi-led Congress party against each other. However, keen experts believe that regional parties may have crucial role in shaping the future political scene.
Both, Congress and BJP are busy with tying up alliances with like-minded regional parties in different states.
Nearly 900 million voters are entitled to vote, many of them will be voting for the first time in the national elections.
“While finalizing the election dates, exam schedules of state examination boards, CBSE, various festivals including festivals which have religious, harvest season in other department are also adequately factored in,” said Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora at a media conference.
With the announcement of the poll schedule the moral code of conduct has come in force in all the states and centrally-governed states.
The code prohibits governments from making any announcement that could influence the voters and gives the poll panel, the power to transfer any official associated with the election process across India.