The Election Commission today held a press conference at the Vigyan Bhavan to announce the dates of the General Election 2019 with the model code of conduct coming into force immediately. The elections will be held in 7 phases instead of 9 phases previously.
Following are the dates of the Lok Sabha elections as announced by Election Commission today:
Date of Poll (Phase 1): 11th April 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 2): 18th April 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 3): 23rd April 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 4): 29th April 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 5): 6th May 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 6): 12th May 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 7): 19th May 2019
Date of counting: 23rd May 2019
Date before which elections are to be complete: 31st May 2019
The Election Commission (EC) also said that currently, there are 900 million voters now against 814.5 million in 2014 and out of that, 15 million voters are aged between 18-19 years, presumably, first-time voters.
CEC Sunil Arora said that photo voter slips are to be distributed to all registered voters at least 5 days before polling, however, it will not suffice by itself to identify voters.
In another important announcement, CEC said that 100% VVPATs are going to be employed in all polling stations. And for free and fair elections, Fresh SOPs have been put in place for last-mile transportation of EVMs with GPS tracking.
With respect to paid news, CEC said that model code of conduct would also apply to content posted on social media by parties and candidates.