The Election Commission (EC) on Friday announced the dates for the upcoming Bihar Assembly election.
The commission said the Bihar election will be held in three phases between October 28 and November 7. It added that the counting of votes will be done on November 10.
Notably, the Bihar Assembly election is the first major election in India that is going to be held amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The commission said 6 lakh PPE kits, 47 lakhs mask have been arranged for safely conducting the polls amid the pandemic.
Bihar election to be conducted in three phases
Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sunil Arora said the election to the state Assembly will be held in three phases amid tight safety and security.
In the first phase, the election will be held for 71 Assembly constituencies spread over 16 districts. The majority of the Left-wing extremism affected districts will go to polls in the first phase. The nominations for the first phase will be accepted from October 1 to 8. Nominations can be withdrawn till October 12 and the election will be held on October 28.
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In the second phase, the election will be held for 94 Assembly constituencies spread over 17 districts. The nominations for the second phase will be accepted from October 9 to 16. Nominations can be withdrawn till October 19 and the election will be held on November 3.
In the last phase, the election will be held for 78 Assembly constituencies in 15 districts. The nominations for the third and final phase will be accepted from October 13 to 20. Nominations can be withdrawn till October 23 and the election will be held on November 7.
Polling time increased by an hour
In a bid to avoid crowding at polling stations and allow more free movement of voters, polling time has been increased by 1 hour. It will be held from 7 am-6 pm, instead of 7 am-5 pm earlier. However, this will not be applicable to Left-wing affected areas.
Model Code of Conduct comes into force
With the announcement of the dates for the Bihar election, the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) comes into force. CEC Sunil Arora said that as the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) comes into force with the announcement of the poll dates, hate speech, fake news, and malicious propaganda will be dealt with harshly.
“If required, special observers will also be deployed for expenditure monitoring and law and order contingency etc,” Sunil Arora added.
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