The Election Commission held a press conference today in Vigyan Bhavan to announce the dates of the 2019 General Election with the model code of conduct that will take effect immediately. The elections will be carried out in 7 phases instead of 9 phases previously.
The following are the dates of the Lok Sabha elections announced today by the Electoral Commission:
Date of Poll (Phase 1): 11th April 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 2): 18th April 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 3): 23rd April 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 4): 29th April 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 5): 6th May 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 6): 12th May 2019
Date of Poll (Phase 7): 19th May 2019
Date of counting: 23rd May 2019
Date before which elections must be completed: May 31, 2019
The Electoral Commission (EC) also said that at present, there are 900 million voters now against 814.5 million in 2014 and, of that, 15 million voters are between 18 and 19 years old, presumably, new voters.
The CEC Sunil Arora said that the photo ballots will be distributed to all registered voters at least 5 days before the vote, however, it will not be enough by itself to identify the voters.
In another important announcement, the CCA said that 100% of the VVPATs will be used in all polling centers. And for free and fair elections, new SOPs have been implemented to transport last-mile EVMs with GPS tracking.
With respect to paid news, the CCA said that the model code of conduct would also apply to content posted on social networks by parties and candidates.