With the Election Commission of India (ECI) announcing for the dates of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, preparations are under way to ensure that polling across the country remains smooth and incident-free. With this intent, the first batch of central forces have just arrived in West Bengal.

The election process begins way earlier than the actual dates of voting. In the run-up to the elections, party-nominated candidates campaign in their constituencies and share their political manifest with the people. Once voting commences, in the first phase – polling will be held on April 11 in the constituencies of Coochbehar and Alipurduar in West Bengal among other places in the country.

Six more phases of polling will follow that — on April 18, 23, 29, May 6, 12, and 19 to cover the rest of the state. Counting of votes will take place on May 23.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) meanwhile had approached the ECI on Wednesday to urge it to declare West Bengal as ‘super-sensitive’ for what it called was its history of poll-violence.

Speaking on election duty, a senior official spoke to the media on Tuesday last stating that several companies of the central forces have been currently assigned to West Bengal. They will be deployed ‘from the very next day’ of their arrival, he had stated.

After all political parties announce the candidate list, there will be campaigning in adherence to the code of conduct laid down by the ECI and the process of nomination-filing on specified dates.

The central troops will be sent to all the districts in phases. The ECI has also been holding senior-level meetings with police and political parties. The total number of troops to be be deployed in West Bengal was however not disclosed by the Election Commission authorities.


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