NEW DELHI: Reacting sharply to the manner in which Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao announced the Assembly poll schedule in the state, Chief Election Commissioner O P Rawat said on Friday that it’s for the Election Commission to decide and declare poll dates.
Taking a jibe at Rao, he said astrology cannot be the basis of deciding election schedule. He said a decision will be taken only after taking every aspect into account. He also cited an SC ruling that repolling must be held on the first occasion to ensure the caretaker government doesn’t take advantage of remaining in power.
“This is unfortunate, no political functionary, nobody other than the Election Commission should venture into declaring polling schedule of any House. It’s really wrong. I can’t say that election will be held now or later. It will be decided only after the review,” Rawat told reporters here on Friday.
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“We will assess if Telangana elections can be held with the remaining four states. Any astrological predictions (over dates) made by anyone notwithstanding,” Rawat said, adding that the ECI would review the ground level preparedness status with CEO Telangana before making up its mind on the timing of elections.
Sources said the state election office was geared up for ensuring the smooth elections in the event of the dissolution of the Assembly and advancement of the elections. It also said that the state would need over 84,000 VVPAT machines which would be available by November.
On Thursday, the Telangana CM had dissolved the Assembly to pave the way for polls.