Bihar Election 2020: The term of the 243-member Bihar assembly ends on November 29.
The assembly election in Bihar will be held in three phases on October 28, November 3 and 7 and the results will be announced on November 10, the Election Commission said today.
This is the first major election to be held in the middle of the worldwide coronavirus crisis. Bihar has to elect a new 243-member assembly by November 29.
Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora called it a "historic election" and the world's biggest in the time of the coronavirus. There will be an extra voting hour, separate voting for Covid patients, suspects and those in quarantine, and no physical contact during the campaign, he announced.
Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, who leads a coalition with the BJP, will fight for a fourth term in these polls, with the opposition RJD of jailed former Chief Minister Lalu Yadav and the Congress challenging him.
Here are the Live updates on Bihar Assembly Election dates' announcement:
"Bihar Polls To Write New Story Of State's Betterment": Chirag Paswan
The Lok Janshakti Party (LJP), which had urged the EC to not hold Bihar assembly elections during the prevailing COVID-19 pandemic, on Friday welcomed the announcement of its schedule, saying the polls will write a "new story" of betterment in the state.
LJP president Chirag Paswan said the state elections will provide the party a chance to present Prime Minister Narendra Modi''s dream of a "developed Bihar" and its patron Ram Vilas Paswan''s work in the state for five decades before the people.
In his tweets, he also struck an emotional note, saying that his father remains in hospital and he misses his words of guidance.
Chirag Paswan said that for the first time in the last five decades, his father will not be present in Bihar during the elections and expressed confidence that he will be able to connect with the people of the state digitally.
BJP, NDA fully prepared for Bihar elections: Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Modi
Bihar Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi on Friday said that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and National Democratic Alliance (NDA) are fully prepared for the upcoming state elections which will be held in three phases with polling starting on October 28.
The Deputy Chief Minister said that the votes will be appealed for on the basis of the work done by the central and state governments.
"BJP and NDA are fully prepared. Those who wanted to postpone elections are being forced to welcome. PM-CM will appeal to vote on the basis of face and work of Center and State. #BiharElections2020," he said in a tweet.
JD(U), BJP, RJD and other parties welcome announcement of Bihar assembly poll schedule
Political parties in Bihar on Friday welcomed the three-phase poll schedule announced by the
Election Commission with the two major electoral alliances predicting their victory in the elections.
The poll panel announced that voting for the first, second and the third and final phase will be held on October 28, November 3 and 7 respectively while counting of votes will take place on November 10.
Welcoming declaration of poll schedule, RJD leader Tejashwi Prasad Yadav asserted that people of the state have already made up their mind for a change of government in the state.
"The people of Bihar have decided to oust Nitish Kumar from the power as they feel cheated by the Chief Minister who ditched the mandate of 2015 NDA will be defeated badly in the elections and our Grand Alliance will come to power after the polls, Mr Tejashwi said.
Mahagathbandhan Parties Won't Accept Tejashwi Yadav: Ram Kripal Yadav
No coalition party of "Mahagathbandhan" (grand alliance) is willing to accept Tejashwi Yadav as its leader and the alliance is likely to break before Bihar Assembly polls, said, Ram Kripal Yadav, BJP's MP from Bihar.
Bharatiya Janata Party, a coalition party in the NDA State government, is pinning its hope in the forthcoming Assembly polls on Mahagathbandhan being leaderless. (Read full story here
"NDA will get majority and Nitish Kumar will be Chief Minister again," says BJP's Ravi Shankar Prasad
Union Minister and MP from Patna Sahib Ravi Shankar Prasad said that he was confident the NDA will get majority in the elections.
"We are confident that NDA will get a majority and Nitish Kumar ji will be Chief Minister again," Mr Prasad told news agency ANI.
The Election Commission has made special arrangements to protect its employees from contracting coronavirus during their election duty in Bihar where assembly elections will be held next month.
The poll body has provided a small kit containing N 95 mask, sanitizer and gloves to protect the employees on poll duty in the state. The packet will also contain one safety key chain to avoid use of hands while pressing buttons.
JD(U) does not matter in the election, our fight is against BJP: Tejashwi Yadav
RJD leader Tejashwi Yadav welcomed the announcement of poll dates.
"We welcome the decision of Election Commission. We are assured as people of Bihar want to get rid of this government. JD(U) does not matter in the election, our fight is against BJP," Mr Yadav was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.
Date of Issue of Gazette Notification: October 1
Last Date of Nominations: October 8
Date for Scrutiny of Nominations: October 9
Last Date for Withdrawal of candidatures: October 12
Date of Poll: October 28
Date of Counting: November 10 (for all phases)
Date of Issue of Gazette Notification: October 9
Last Date of Nominations: October 16
Date for Scrutiny of Nominations: October 17
Last Date for Withdrawal of candidatures: October 19
Date of Poll: November 3
Date of Counting: November 10
Date of Issue of Gazette Notification: October 13
Last Date of Nominations: October 20
Date for Scrutiny of Nominations: October 21
Last Date for Withdrawal of candidatures: October 23
Date of Poll: November 7
Date of Counting: November 10
Bihar Polls: What Changes In World's 1st Biggest Election Amid Pandemic
The Bihar election next month will be the biggest voting exercise in the world to be held in the time of coronavirus. The Election Commission announced a series of steps to protect against infection during campaigning and voting. Chief Election Commission Sunil Arora said this was part of the "new normal" in the global pandemic.
Bihar polls will be held in three phases
Phase 1 - 71 constituencies - 16 districts - (31,000 polling stations)
Phase 2 - 94 constituencies - 17 districts (42,000 polling stations)
Phase 3 - 78 constituencies - 15 districts (33,500 polling stations)
The model code of conduct comes into immediate effect in Bihar.
Bihar Election Announcement: All polling stations will have gloves, masks, sanitisers, says CEC
- All physical meetings have been curtailed for election meetings and campaigns.
- All polling stations will have gloves, masks, sanitisers, soap, and all other medical equipment needed to deal with medical situations.
- All polling stations will be on the ground floor for ease of access to persons with disabilities. Transport, wheelchairs, and other provisions will also be available.
Covid patients who are quarantined will be able to cast their vote on the last day of poll, at their respective polling stations, under the supervision of health authorities. This is beside the option of postal facility already extended to them: CEC Sunil Arora
"All safety protocols must be followed strictly as laid down by the Health Ministry. At all times this will be monitored by both the election authority as well as the health authorities," says Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora.
For Bihar polls, the voting hours have been increased by an hour. So, voting will happen from 7 am to 6 pm, instead of the usual 5 pm: Chief Election Commissioner
Poll Booths will have 1,000 voters instead of 1,500: Sunil Arora
- This will involve huge logistics and manpower.
- The next assembly in Bihar must be constituted by November 29, hence the election schedule is being announced.
- To maintain safe distance between voters, there will be more number of polling booths.
- Poll Booths will have 1,000 voters instead of 1,500
- COVID-19 has changed the way in which we do everything. At the start of the pandemic, many elections were postponed. So far 70 countries have postponed elections. But a new normal is now in place, by taking precautions and following all safety norms.
- The democratic process involving the people has to continue. Slowly, the world over, steps are being taken to make elections happen.
- We are here to announce the dates Bihar elections. It is one of the largest elections in one of the largest states of India the immediate future.
The term of the 243-member Bihar legislative assembly comes to an end on November 29.
EC has been doing a parallel exercise on what to do with Bihar and bypolls in a couple of states
Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora is holding a press conference to announce dates for the Bihar assembly polls.