New Delhi: After Election Commission announced the dates of assembly elections for the five poll bound states - Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Goa, Punjab, Manipur a digital community-based platform LocalCircles, conducted a survey. That survey revealed that 41 per cent of people supported a ban on all political rallies.
As per the survey, held after the announcement by the EC, 31 per cent of citizens favored postponing of assembly elections.
In an unprecedented step, the commission on Saturday banned public rallies, roadshows and corner meetings till January 15 in the five states, citing the fresh surge in Covid cases, and issued stringent safety guidelines.
In the survey the respondents stated that 24 per cent respondents said that Covid compliance should be imposed on all political rallies, but they must continue.
Four per cent of the respondents said that no action is needed as the risk of Covid spread due to elections is low.
The survey received over 11,000 responses from citizens in 309 districts of the country, including 4,172 responses from districts in the five poll-going states, the platform said in a statement.
While 68 per cent respondents were men, 32 per cent were women.
The announcement of assembly polls was welcomed by major parties, while parties, including the Congress, urged the poll watchdog to ensure a level playing field in view of the Covid curbs on campaigning.
The EC has stated that polling staff should be double vaccinated. Staff is considered as frontline workers and will be provided with precautionary dose. Polling time has been increased by one hour.
Candidates can file online nomination.
24.9 lakh first-time electors are registered in the 5 states including Uttar Pradesh.
As Covid cases soared in view of Omicron variant, ECI held meetings with Union Health Secretary & Home Secretary, experts, & health secretaries of States. After taking these views & ground situation, ECI has decided to announce polls with safety norms in place says CEC Sushil Chandra
CEC has stated that their priority is covid safe polls. "We aim to conduct Covid-safe elections in five states with maximum voter participation with extensive preparations," the Election Commission has said.
Election Commission has asked parties to conduct virtual campaigns. They have not permitted any physical rallies till January 15. They have also asked to avoid victory processions after results. Parties to provide masks and follow covid protocols for physical rallies. CEC Sushil Chandra announced that the situation to be reviewed and fresh instructions to be issued later. The commission has asked to take opinion of health experts taken to ensure Covid-safe elections. Polls will be held in phases.
Phases Of Polling
Uttar Pradesh first phase on 10th Feb, Second on 14th Feb, Third on 20th Feb, Fourth On 23rd Feb, Fifth on 27th Feb, Sixth on 3rd March, Seventh on 7th March. Uttarakhand, Punjab, Goa polling will be held in single phase on Feb 14th. Manipur will vote on 27th Feb and 3rd March. Election counting will be starting from 10th March.