Decision on Goa election in June, along with 4 other states

GOANEWS DESK, PANAJI | 28 January 2016 15:52 IST

Decision regarding Goa Assembly election will not be taken before June, five months ahead from now.

The date of Goa election would also depend upon having elections of four other states – Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab and Manipur.

The local electoral office does not deny the possibility of holding election in December, but also clarifies that it is only a thought.

“Holding elections in the second week of December is merely a thought, which is yet to be proposed or discussed formally”, said a senior official at the local Chief Electoral Office.

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party however does not want Goa election to be held before March next year, when ends the term of Goa Assembly.

A formal meeting of the Election Commission of India, along with state-level electoral officers, will be held in the first week of June, comprising of Goa, Manipur, Punjab, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh.

It would all depend on whether the Election Commission of India agrees to prepone elections of all other four states to adjust with Goa, one of the smallest states among all.

While Goa Assembly has only 40 seats, the other state Assembly seats are Manipur (60), Uttarakhand (70), Punjab (117) and Uttar Pradesh (403).

The term of all the five states ends as follows:

Uttarakhand: 8 March

Manipur: 11 March

Punjab and Goa: 18 March

Uttar Pradesh: 27 May

The thought process of holding elections of all the five states in December-January has begun since February and March are examinations while festive mood begins in Goa from 20 December onwards and continues till January end.

“We had over 20 complaints from different quarters against the dates of last election held in March 2012. This has led us to think of preponing the election”, the senior official told goanews.com.

On the other hand, the election authorities have also considered IFFI held in Goa in the last week of November, followed by Old Goa Feast.

“We are thus left with the only option of holding election in the second week of December, before the Christmas as well as the peak season of Goa tourism”, said the official.

The local election office plans to propose to hold elections early because 2012 elections were also held almost two months in advance as term of most of the five Assemblies was ending in May.

The elections held last time were Manipur (28 January), Punjab and Uttarakhand (30 January), Uttar Pradesh in 7 phases (8 February to 3 March) and Goa (4 March).

In case Goa election is held in December, the ECI will have to hold UP election almost five months before its terms ends.

The local election office thus admits that the final decision would not depend on Goa alone but four other states, which are much bigger than Goa, including UP, the biggest Assembly of the country.

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