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Elections in West Bengal, Assam, TN, Kerala, Puducherry to be held between March 27 and April 29
Bengal to vote in 8 phases, Assam in 3, TN, Kerala, Puducherry to have single-phase polling; counting of votes on May 2
New Delhi, February 26, 2021
The Election Commission of India (ECI) today announced the schedule for the crucial elections to the state legislative assemblies of West Bengal, Assam, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry, which will be held between March 27 and April 29.
Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora told a press conference here that polling for the 294 Assembly seats in West Bengal would would be held in eight phases on March 27, April 1, April 6, April 10, April 17, April 22, April 26 and April 29.
Polling in the elections to the 126-member Assam Assembly will be conducted in three phases on March 27, April 1 and April 6.
Polling in the elections to the 234-member Tamil Nadu Assembly, the 140-member Kerala Assembly and the 30-member Puducherry Assembly will be held in a single phase on April 6.
The counting of votes in all the States will be held on May 2 and most results are expected to be out by that evening.
With the announcement of the election schedule, the Model Code of Conduct has come into force with immediate effect, Arora said.
He said adequate Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) would be deployed during the elections. All sensitive, critical and vulnerable polling stations in the four States of West Bengal, Assam, Tamil Nadu and Kerala and the Union Territory (UT) of Puducherry had been identified, he said.
In all, a total of 824 assembly constituencies would be involved in these elections, with about 18.68 crore electors eligible to exercise their franchise at 2.7 lakh polling stations that would be set up.
The five-year term of the present Tamil Nadu Assembly is due to end on May 24, of West Bengal on May 30, Assam on May 31, Kerala on June 1 and Puducherry on June 8.
Eight assembly seats in Assam are reserved for Scheduled Caste (SC) candidates and 16 for Scheduled Tribe (ST) candidates. The corresponding numbers are 44 and 2 in Tamil Nadu, 68 and 16 in West Bengal, and 14 and 2 in Kerala. In Puducherry five seats are reserved for SC candidates.
The Commission has issued detailed guidelines to ensure that the elections are held in a COVID-safe manner, including the wearing of masks by all persons during all election-related activities, social distancing measures and thermal scanning of persons and use of hand sanitizers at premises used for election purposes.
The number of electors, as per the electoral rolls, is 2,32,44,454 in Assam; 6,28,23,749 in Tamil Nadu; 7,34,07832 in West Bengal; 2,67,88,268 in Kerala and 10,02,589 in Puducherry.