Saturday, September 03, 2005

Elections in Bihar on October 18

Onkar Singh in New Delhi | September 03, 2005 15:49 IST
Last Updated: September 03, 2005 16:07 IST

The Election Commission on Saturday announced that assembly elections in Bihar will be held in four phases beginning October 18.

Addressing the media in New Delhi, Chief Election Commissioner B B Tandon said first phase of polling will be held on October 18, the second on October 26, the third on November 13 and the last phase on November 19.

"The phasing has been done keeping in mind the security situation in the state. The condition has not changed from what it was during the previous polls," said the CEC.

"The first phase will cover 61 constituencies in 11 districts and four constituencies in Patna district. This phase will cover the entire Naxal belt," Tandon said.
Read our 2005 assembly election coverage

Polling for the second phase, on October 26, will cover 61 districts.

Polling for the third phase, on November 13, and will cover 72 constituencies and the fourth phase, on November 19, will cover 41 constituencies.

Counting will be on November 22.

Tandon said the gap between the second and third phases is because of Diwali and other holidays in the period.

Tandon said the model code of conduct will come into force with immediate effect.

This will be applicable to all the political parties, the Bihar government and the Centre with respect to Bihar.

Out of 243 assembly seats , 39 are reserved for the scheduled castes, he said, adding that clean-up of the electoral rolls had to be completed before elections. This included deletion of names of dead and duplicate voter names, besides expediting the execution of pending non-bailable warrants.

Tandon said as of August 31, 26, 400 warrants were pending execution.

A special drive to unearth illegal arms will also be conducted to take out a list of anti-social elements before elections, he said, adding that voter identity cards will be mandatory on polling booths.

Till date 67 per cent of the population had been covered.

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