Politics

CEC Hints at Bihar Polls for September-October, Calls Them ‘Mother of all Elections’

New Delhi:Assembly elections in Bihar, where BJP is set for a battle against a united Janata Parivar, are likely to be held sometime in September-October when extensive central forces and a reworked expenditure monitoring system will be deployed to curb money and muscle power.

The electoral rolls will be ready on July 31, Chief Election Commissioner Nasim Zaidi said, terming the polls in Bihar as “mother of all elections”.

Going by precedents, the election timings would be somewhere in September or October, he said, adding they are yet to begin the process of finalising a schedule.

The term of the current Assembly ends in November.

Zaidi said the EC will have to take into account weather conditions, festivals, exams, holidays, heavy monsoon, heavy rains and floods before arriving at exact schedule.

He also refused to go into the number of phases in which the assembly polls will be held.

“Abuse of money is a big problem in Bihar. Therefore, this time we are going in for more systematic efforts. Certain legal amendments are yet to come from the Law Ministry. But within our powers, we have launched expenditure monitoring,” Zaidi told PTI in an interview.

He said the EC has undertaken mapping of all constituencies of Bihar into three categories. Where EC finds maximum sensitivity, it plans to deploy central police forces “well in time.”

“…we will identify this time persons who serve as a channel for distributing bribe or for distribution of liquor, distribution of gifts. This assessment is still going on and we hope to come up with a re-strategised expenditure monitoring which we will roll out at an appropriate time,” he said.

To take on a formidable BJP which along with its allies had won 31 of the 40 seats in the last Lok Sabha elections in the state, the ruling JD(U) and RJD have decided to come together to fight the elections.