Published: Fri, October 13, 2017
Global | By Shelia Dennis

Himachal Pradesh Election 2017 dates, schedule: BJP desperate to overthrow Virbhadra Singh

Himachal Pradesh Election 2017 dates, schedule: BJP desperate to overthrow Virbhadra Singh

Assembly elections in the hilly State of Himachal Pradesh will be held on November 9 and the counting of votes will be held on December 18, the Election Commission announced on Thursday.

The Election Commissioner said, "Model code of conduct for Himachal Pradesh assembly election comes into effect from now itself".

The BJP today appointed former minister Praveen Sharma as the election management incharge of the party for the upcoming Himachal Pradesh Assembly polls. With all Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs), the election will see the use of Voter-Verified Paper Audit Trail (VVPATs).

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The CEC, also announced that bulk SMSs and voice messages on phone shall also be in purview of election advertisements.

While the term of the 182-member Gujarat Assembly, where the BJP is in power, ends on January 22, the term of the 68-member Himachal Pradesh, ruled by the Congress, Assembly ends on January 7.

The Congress cried foul at the commission's decision to announce the schedule only for Himachal and accused the Centre of putting pressure on the EC to "suit its political ends". The Gujarat assembly election date will be set before the counting process ends in Himachal so that the result doesn't impact voter behaviour in Gujarat, Jyoti said. Making an exception to its normal practice, the EC announced that Gujarat Assembly election results will be declared on December 18 along with Himachal results. While a single phase election was held in Himachal on 4 November 2012, Gujarat underwent two-phased election on 13 December and 17 December; the results for both the states were declared on 20 December. In Himachal Pradesh, the Congress won 36 out of the 68 seats with a 42 percent vote share, while the BJP won 26 seats. There are four independents while one seat is vacant.

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The Election Commission of India must answer to the people of the country that why the dates of Gujarat elections wasn't announced today, added Surjewala.

October 12 should be taken as a date of missed opportunity in the Election Commission's calendar when it failed to live up to the simultaneous poll hype created by it and by the prime minister.

He said voter slips will be distributed to each and every voter in the state seven days before the polls along with a voter guide brouchure in the local language of Hindi.

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The ceiling for election expenditure per candidate is Rs. 25 lakh.

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