MP byelection on Nov 9, to coincide with Himachal polls

MP byelection on Nov 9, to coincide with Himachal polls

The term of the 182-member Gujarat Assembly ends on January 22 and elections for it will be held on a date before December 18. "ECI has instructed state governments to assist differently-abled voters and they have already procured 200 wheelchairs to assist those who may not be able to walk to polling stations".

Joti said the model code of conduct in Himachal Pradesh comes into effect immediately under which the state government can not take policy decisions.

Chief Election Commissioner AK Joti is holding a press conference in New Delhi.

Earlier, Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi during his "Navsarjan Yatra" in Gujarat and had launched attacks on the Narendra Modi government, accusing it of crony capitalism and their "failed" attempts to consolidate the economy of India, through demonetisation and Goods and Services Tax (GST). Similarly, the Central government can not announce policy decisions regarding Himachal Pradesh.

Defending the Commission's decision, the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) said that "several factors, and not Prime Minister Narendra Modi's proposed public meetings in Gujarat", were considered to defer the poll announcement on Gujarat.

The term of the present government ends on January 7.

It can be brought forward or postponed by four or 5 days but cannot be too long or too short, explained Joti, citing Gujarat chief secretary's request for more time to fix roads, provide relief and rehabilitation because of floods in July and availability crunch of the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) as other reasons for delay in the announcement. Dates of elections and counting in Gujarat will be declared later. "Why should there be suspense over the Gujarat poll dates", Raja asked.

Not so, said Mr Prasad, stating, "We studied the poll dates of Himachal and Gujarat and all I want to tell you is that in 2007, Himachal's poll date was 20/10/ 2007 and Gujarat's first phase was on 21/11/2007".

"Responding to statement to the opposition charges, Sudhanshu Trivedi, BJP spokesperson stated that Congress' statements on Gujarat Poll dates are unfortunate." also It would have been okay if a small political group would have said this statement.

The model code comes into force the day polls are announced and remains till the poll process is over. He has demanded the EC should explain its decision to the people of India.

But the Chief Election Commissioner has argued that this has meant a longer duration of the enforcement of the model code of conduct in Gujarat.

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