Telangana elections: Polls to be held on December 7

Election notification will be issued on November 12.

Published: 07th October 2018 03:26 AM  |   Last Updated: 07th October 2018 03:26 AM   |  A+A-

Express News Service

HYDERABAD: Ending speculations on when Telangana would go to the hustings, the Election Commission of India on Saturday announced that the State Assembly polls would be held on December 7. The counting of votes and declaration of results for all 119 Assembly segments will be held on December 11, Chief Election Commissioner OP Rawat said.

Election notification will be issued on November 12. The single-phase polls will be the first Assembly elections in Telangana after its formation. Though the division of Andhra Pradesh was planned before the 2014 Assembly elections, polls were conducted before the States officially came into existence. TRS had then won 63 seats while the Congress, Telugu Desam Party and AIMIM secured 21, 15 and 7 seats respectively.

This election will be like an acid test for all political players in the Telugu-speaking State. The TRS which swept the polls and formed the government on June 2, 2014, is making all-out efforts to win 100 seats through positive vote. The Congress, which has been in the Opposition for almost five years, is trying to wrest power from the pink party through its Grand Alliance, which includes TDP and TJS.

The TDP has been out of power for 15 years in Telangana and is struggling to prove its presence in the State. Left parties which have, so far, fought unitedly in the past are divided this time. The CPI, which is now a partner of the Grand Alliance, has refused to join the CPM-led Bahujan Left Front (BLF). The BLF will field candidates in all Assembly segments with an aim to achieve “Saamajika Telangana”. While announcing the schedule, Rawat said it was imperative that Assembly polls be conducted within six months of the legislative body being dissolved.

“Elections have to be conducted within a period of six months from the date of premature dissolution of the Assembly i,e. by March 3, 2019 in Telangana’s case. That is why the election schedule was announced today,” he said and added that the polls in Telangana would be held along with that in Rajasthan as the final electoral rolls were not published in Telangana.

Rawat observed that the High Court had directed the Election Commission to publish electoral rolls only after producing them before the court. “We planned to publish finalised electoral rolls on October 8, but as the court is still looking into the case pertaining to the matter, final rolls will be published on October 12,” he explained. As per the draft rolls, the State is home to 2.61 crore voters.

Has TRS left rivals behind in poll campaign?
Hyderabad: Leaving its main rivals behind in the poll race, the Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS)has been vigorously campaigning for the elections across the State. While TRS supremo K Chandrasekhar Rao announced the names of 105 candidates, right after dissolving the Assembly on September 6, the Congress proposed Grand Alliance partners are yet to sort out the issue of seat sharing. The TRS chief has so far addressed five massive public meetings.

BJP to pick ‘winning horses’ after October 10
Hyderabad: The State BJP unit on Saturday maintained that though it has received more than 1,000 applications for party tickets from workers and loyalists to contest in the upcoming Assembly polls, the final list of candidates will be announced only after a Central parliamentary committee meeting is convened on Oct 10.



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