The elections for the Lok Sabha would be held in seven phases and counting of votes would be taken up on June 4.

Announcing the election schedule in a press conference at New Delhi on Saturday, Chief Election Commissioner Rajeev Kumar flanked by two new Election Commissioners Gyanesh Kumar and Sukhbir Singh Sandhu announced the election schedule.

He said “The Polling will be held on April 19, April 26, May 7, May 13, May 20, May 25, and June 1 in seven phases and counting of votes will be undertaken simultaneously on June 4.”

With the announcement of elections, a model code of conduct has been enforced throughout the country.

Polling for Lok Sabha election in Himachal Pradesh would be held in the last phase on June 1; the election commission has also announced to conduct by- elections in Six Assembly constituencies of Himachal Pradesh i.e. Dharamshala, Lahaul- Spiti, Sujanpur, Badsar, Gagret and Kutlehar.

The six Congress rebels MLAs –  Sudhir Sharma ( Dharamshala), Rajender Rana ( Sujanpur), Ravi Thakur (Lahaul  – Spiti) , ID Lakhanpal ( Badsar) ) , Chaitanya Sharma( Gagret) ) and Devender Bhutto( Kutlehar), disqualified from  Himachal Vidhan Sabha by the Speaker Kuldeep Singh Pathania under anti-defection law for defying the party whip, will also have to seek fresh mandate in the by-election on June 1.

Assembly elections scheduled for 4 states, including Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Odisha and Andhra Pradesh was also announced.

“Assembly elections in Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim will be held on April 19, in Andhra Pradesh on May 13, while Assembly elections in Odisha will be held in four phases on May13, May 20, may 25 and June 1; by-election will also be held for 26 assembly constituencies,” said Rajv Kumar.

He said, “Nearly 97 crore voters are eligible to cast their votes for the Lok Sabha elections and the election commission has made elaborate arrangements for conducting the elections; 10.5 lakh polling stations would be set up  and 55 lakh EVM would be manned by 1.5 crore personnel,” he added.

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