National

Five-phase polls in J-K, Jharkhand from Nov 25 to Dec 20

New Delhi: Assembly polls in Jammu and Kashmir and Jharkhand will be held in five phases between November 25 and December 20 and counting of votes will take place on December 23, the Election Commission announced today.

Polling in both states will take place on November 25, December 2, 9, 14 and 20, Chief Election Commissioner V S Sampath said at a press conference here.

Bye-elections to three assembly seats in Delhi, which fell vacant after their MLAs resigned following their victories in Lok Sabha polls, will be held on November 25.

Brushing aside demands from some quarters, mainly the ruling National Conference, that elections in flood-hit Jammu and Kashmir be postponed, Sampath said the recent calamity will have no “special impact” on polls.

He said post-flood situation, along with other aspects like climate, festivals and law and order situation, have been taken into account while deciding the poll schedule.

“Except for one political party, most of the political parties (in Jammu and Kashmir) were in favour of holding elections on time. They said there is no reason, no justification for delaying the polls. The EC’s mandate is to hold elections on time,” he said.

The current six-year term of Assembly of Jammu and Kashmir Assembly comes to an end on January 16.

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