The Election Commission is set to announce elections to the Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh assemblies on October 12 evening at a press conference. "Himachal might get very heavy snowfall and severe weather from mid-November.so keeping that in mind, we are holding votes on November 9".
When AK Jyoti was asked if Gujarat election will be held in two phases, he said that it was yet to be decided.
The last date for filing nominations will be October 23 while the scrutiny and withdrawal of nominations will be allowed till October 24. The counting of votes will be held on December 18.
While announcing the date, Chief Election Commissioner AK Jyoti said for the first time Himachal Pradesh will have 136 all women managed booths. He said the poll schedule was planned such that the Himachal result does not impact voting in Gujarat.
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A Jio costumer will also get 100 local/national SMS per day and a complimentary subscription to Jio apps on the recharge. These vouchers are redeemable post-November 15 and the users will not be able to redeem all the vouchers at one go.
On the question of when elections would be held in Gujarat, CEC Joti said it will be organised prior to December 18. As far as practical, polling stations are being made disabled-friendly, so that they can exercise their franchise.
The Commission has also increased the size of the VVPAT paper trail. "The height of voting compartments will be increased to 30 inches". Bulk SMSes & voice messages on phone shall also be in purview of election advertisements, said CEC. Braille photo voter slips will be provided for visually-challenged voters.
The term of the 182-member Gujarat Assembly ends on 22 January, 2018 while that of the 68-member Himachal Pradesh's Assembly ends on 7 January, 2018.