The Election Commission of India (EC) on September 21 announced dates for the Haryana and Maharashtra Legislative Assembly elections.
The Assembly election in Jharkhand will be held later, the commission said.
Both Maharashtra and Haryana will vote on October 21. In both states, counting of votes will happen on October 24, ahead of Diwali, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora told reporters in a press conference on September 21.
Schedule of Maharashtra and Haryana Assembly elections 2019:
> Issue of notification: September 27
> Last date of nomination: October 4
> Scrutiny of nominations: October 5
> Last date of withdrawal of candidature: October 7
> Voting: October 21
> Counting of votes: October 24
Special security arrangements will be made for Left Wing Extremism (LWE) affected areas in Gadchiroli and Gondia in Maharashtra, said the CEC.
The poll body had met on September 12 to discuss the reports submitted by the teams sent to the two states.
There was no word on when Jammu and Kashmir would head for elections to elect its legislative body. The state, which will become a Union Territory (UT) on October 31, has been under President’s Rule for over a year.
Due to J&K’s bifurcation into two UTs – Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh – a delimitation exercise is expected to be undertaken there.
The tenure of the sitting Haryana Legislative Assembly will end on November 2, and that of the Maharashtra Assembly will end on November 9. The total number of elected representatives in the Haryana and Maharashtra assemblies are 90 and 288, respectively.
In 2014, election dates for Maharashtra and Haryana were announced on September 20. Voting had taken place on October 15. The counting of votes happened on October 19, days ahead of Diwali.
Jharkhand had voted in five phases between November 25 and December 23, 2014.
Riding on a continued ‘Modi wave’, the Bharatiya Janata Party had stormed to power in Haryana, end a two-term Congress rule.
In Maharashtra, BJP was the single largest party. Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena agreed to support the BJP to form the government in a post-poll arrangement. BJP-Shiv Sena and Congress-NCP all contested the election separately in 2014.
This time, the BJP and Shiv Sena are widely expected to contest the election in an alliance. The alliance would also include some smaller partners. Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) are set to contest together, along with some smaller allies.
In Haryana, the BJP is likely to go alone. There were reports that Congress was seeking an alliance with some of the smaller parties there, including the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP). It remains unclear as to what regional parties like the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) and Jannayak Janta Party (JJP) would be opting for.