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Cong Cribs As EC Doesn”t Declare Gujarat Poll Dates Along With Himachal

It was sort of deja vu. The Election Commission’s decision to put off announcing Gujarat poll schedule while declaring elections time-table for Himachal Pradesh has evoked predictable response from the Congress. While CEC Rajiv Kumar defended scheduling Himachal elections on November 12 and December 8 as result day, he said Gujarat poll dates would come later; he pointed to a 40 day gap of tenure of two assemblies (Himachal & Gujarat). Ideally, Congress should have cheered Himachal dates considering it has not even bothered to start its campaign in Gujarat and is largely relying on a proxy like AAP. The EC said it was scheduling an early poll in Himachal because of snowing in the upper reaches. In 2017 too the.EC had given separate dates for Gujarat and Himachal. At that time Gujarat poll dates were delayed to put off imposing the model code of conduct in the state as it was felt it would disrupt flood relief operations. Then CEC AK Jyoti had cited how in 2001 the law ministry and the EC had reached an understanding following that there would not be a gap of more than 21 days between the announcement of polls and the date of the notification of elections. That means the model code will be in place for 46 days. When elections to Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh were announced together in 2012, the model code remained enforced for 86 days.