09/09/2015 3:20 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:25 AM IST

Bihar State Assembly Elections To Kick Off On October 12

Hindustan Times via Getty Images
PATNA, INDIA - AUGUST 30: Congress President Sonia Gandhi with Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and RJD Chief Lalu Prasad during the Swabhiman rally at Gandhi Maidan, on August 30, 2015 in Patna, India. Gandhi attacked Modi on national level issues - his 'failure' to provide jobs to the youth, his 'anti-farmer' land bill, which he is now set to withdraw under Opposition from the Congress and the 'communal' agenda of the ruling BJP. (Photo by Santosh Kumar/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

NEW DELHI -- The Election Commission of India announced today that the Bihar State Assembly elections would be contested in five phases from October 12 to November 5, this year, and the counting day will be on November 8.

ECI said that 6.68 crore voters are eligible to cast their vote in the Bihar elections which will be fought over 243 assembly seats - 47 of these constituencies are affected by left-wing extremism.

Phase 1 of the election, comprising of 49 seats, will be contested on October 12. Phase 2 (32 seats) - October 16. Phase 3 (50 seats) - October 28. Phase 4 (55 seats) - November 1. Phase 5 (57 seats) - November 5.

ECI said that the Model Code of Conduct will be put in place immediately and opinion polls by the electronic media will be barred 48 hours before the election kick off on October 12.

ECI said that strong security arrangements will be in place for voters to go to the polls without fear of intimidation or violence, and its goal is to conduct a "peaceful and inclusive" election. It said that photos of voters will be fed into Electronic Voting Machines to avoid confusion when people with the same name cast their vote.

While central security forces will be posted in polling stations, over nine central and state agencies have been mobilised to check the movement of money and liquor in Bihar.

The Bihar elections promises to be a nail biting showdown between the Narendra Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party and Chief Minister Nitish Kumar-led Janata Dal United, who has formed an alliance with Lalu Prasad Yadav's Rashtriya Janata Dal and Sonia Gandhi's Congress Party.

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