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No state-specific schemes to be announced in Budget: EC

Announcing the date of Delhi Assembly elections, the Election Commission on Monday stressed that the Centre will not declare any “state-specific schemes” in the national Budget during the upcoming Parliament session.

Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora made the announcement while informing that the polling for the general election to the legislative assembly in Delhi will be held on February 8 and counting of votes on February 11.

Replying to a query while addressing a press conference, Arora said as the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) comes into effect immediately from the announcement of Delhi assembly election schedule, and “no state-specific schemes will be announced in the national Budget”.

“All the provisions of the model code will apply to the whole of NCT of Delhi with regard to all candidates, political parties and the government of the said UT (Union Territory). The Model Code of Conduct shall also be applicable to the Union Government in so far as announcements or policy decisions pertaining to or for the NCT of Delhi,” he said.

He said that the Commission has made elaborate arrangements for ensuring the effective implementation of the MCC guidelines and any violations of these guidelines would be strictly dealt with.

The Commission has also issued instructions for swift, effective and stringent action for enforcement of MCC during the first 72 hours of announcement of the election schedule and also for maintaining extra vigilance and strict enforcement action in the last 72 hours prior to the close of polls, Arora said.

“These instructions have been issued in the form of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) for compliance by the field election machinery.”

Mentioning that the term of the legislative assembly of Delhi 2019 is due to expire on February 22, 2020, Arora said the Election Commission is committed to hold free, fair and transparent election to the Delhi assembly before the cessation of its term.

Arora announced that the Delhi elections will be held in single phase and out of 70 assembly seats, 12 are reserved for Scheduled Caste, whose fate will be decided by 1,47,03,692 electors in the national capital.

He said that there will be 13,750 polling stations, a 16.89 per cent increase over the 11,763 polling stations in 2014.

Delhi goes to polls on Feb 8, counting on Feb 11

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