The Election Commission of India announced dates for elections to the Assemblies of Meghalaya, Tripura and Nagaland today. The three states — comprising 60-member Houses each — are among eight states that go to polls this year. The tenure of the Meghalaya, Tripura and Nagaland Assemblies expire on March 6, March 13 and March 14, 2018, respectively. State elections to Karnataka, Mizoram, Chhattisgarh, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan are also due this year.
With the Election Commission announcing dates to these three states today, the model code of conduct comes into play and election campaigning by political parties will soon pick up pace. The press conference is expected to begin at noon. We will get you the latest updates.
Assembly Election dates 2018 highlights:
12.51 pm: Here are all the dates you need to know regarding the elections to Tripura, Nagaland and Meghalaya.
Date of issue of gazette notification: January 24
Last date of nomination: January 31
Scrutiny of nomination: February 1
Last date of withdrawal of candidature: February 3,
Date of polling: February 18
Date of counting: March 3
* Meghalaya, Nagaland
Date of issue of gazette notification: January 31
Last date of nomination: February 7
Scrutiny of nomination: February 8
Last date of withdrawal of candidature: February 12
Date of polling: February 27
Date of counting: March 3
12.11 pm: Election to the three states will happen in two rounds. Tripura will vote on February 18, 2017, which is a Sunday. Meghalaya and Nagaland will vote on February 27 (Tuesday). Counting for all three states will be conducted on March 3, 2018. The results will be declared on the same day.
12.06 pm: VVPATs and EVMs will be used in the three states. While EVMs have been used for the last 20 years in these three states, VVPATs will be deployed for the first time for the Assembly polls, Joti says.
12.04 pm: Chief Election Commissioner AK Joti has begun addressing a press conference to announce the dates. Remember, once the dates are announced, the Model Code of Conduct comes into force in the three states.
11.53 am: The voters’ list was recently published for the state of Meghalaya, showing women voters outnumbering men. Women make up 50.4 per cent of the registered voters, reports PTI. There are 18, 30, 104 voters, of which 9, 23,848 are women. No one registered under the third gender option. Meghalaya, with a population of 3.2 million people, has a literacy rate of 74.4 per cent.
11.50 am: The dates for the polls are likely to be announced shortly in a press conference.
11.10 am: In Nagaland, the Naga People’s Front is at the helm of the 60-member Nagaland Assembly. The BJP won four seats while the JD(U) bagged one in the last election in 2013. Ahead of the polls, the BJP has accused the Manik Sarkar-led government of “misrule.”
Party president Amit Shah had said, “The situation in Tripura has gone from bad to worse in the last 25 years of Communist misrule. The Communists have unleashed poverty and unemployment, whenever and wherever they are in power. The people of the state are desperately looking for change and want development, which can be delivered only by a BJP government.”
11.00 am: The 60-member Tripura Assembly is under the CPI(M) government. The BJP and Congress will look to consolidate their positions in the House, with currently just seven and two seats respectively.
10.40 am: The Meghalaya House, which also comprises 60 seats, is currently headed by a Congress government which had won 29 seats in the 2013 legislative Assembly election. Meghalaya is one of the only five states currently governed by the Congress, making this election important for the party to win.
10.30 am: The poll dates for Meghalaya, Mizoram and Nagaland are being announced first as their Assemblies expire in March. The tenure of the Karnataka Assembly ends in May, Mizoram in December and Chattisgarh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh in January 2019.
10.00 am: The Election Commission of India is expected to announce the schedule for elections to three states today. Of the eight states going to polls this year, the Houses of Meghalaya, Tripura and Nagaland expire in March. Follow our live blog for news on the dates of voting, counting and results to the three states here.