NEW DELHI, Jan 4 - Amidst a high political drama in the national capital concerning Manipur, the Election Commission on Wednesday announced a two-phase poll in the NE State.
The announcement by the Election Commission came even as a high-powered delegation led by Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh landed in the capital to meet President, Chief Election Commission and AICC leadership purportedly to register their protest over NDA Government�s design to impose President�s Rule in the State.
However, ECI�s poll declaration gave the delegation some respite. They also called on President Pranab Mukherjee this afternoon.
According to the EC announcement the State will go to polls on March 4 and March 8 and the counting will take place on March 11. The last date of filing nomination is January 27, scrutiny on January 28 and last date of withdrawal of nomination is on January 30. In the first phase 38 Assembly constituencies would go to polls and 22 in the second phase.
Meanwhile, the political heat generated by the reports of the Modi Government planning to impose President�s Rule in Manipur seems to have subsided with the poll announcement.
A member of the delegation that called on the President after the poll announcement said that it turned out to be a courtesy call and no memorandum was submitted to him. Earlier, the plan was to press the President not to sign the proclamation.
The leaders said that they are satisfied with the decision to hold a two-phase polls and that it is in line with their demands.
Meanwhile, BJP general secretary in charge of Northea- stern States, Ram Madhav, has accused the Manipur Chief Minister of playing politics by creating new districts. By creating a divide between the hills and the valley, he wanted to benefit politically, he alleged. But in the process he has created a volatile situation in the State and put the people of the valley through utmost suffering,� Madhav told a daily.
He said it was of the utmost importance for normalcy to be restored in the State for the conduct of peaceful elections.
�It is the responsibility of Ibobi Singh to take measures to have the blockade lifted�, he also said.