GUWAHATI, Dec 17 � The Panchayat elections will be held in three phases in the State starting January 30, 2013. With the official announcement of the dates by the Assam State Election Commission for holding the local polls across the State barring the Sixth Schedule areas, the model code of conduct too has come into effect from today.
Addressing media persons here, State Election Commissioner Biren Dutta said that a host of factors have been taken into consideration before finalising the time schedule of the Panchayat elections.
�We have taken into account several factors like the Magh Bihu, the HS exams, Sahitya Sabha session etc before fixing the date of the Panchayat elections so that no one is put into inconvenience,� said Dutta.
Dutta informed that given the prevailing inflationary conditions, the expenditure of the candidates have been hiked this year. The expenditure of the Zila Parishad members has been increased to Rs 4 lakh which was earlier Rs 40,000. The expenditure of the Anchalik Panchayat members has been hiked to Rs one lakh which was earlier Rs 20,000. The expenditure of the Gaon Panchayat presidents which was earlier Rs 20,000 has been increased to Rs one lakh. The expenditure of the ward members has been increased from Rs 2000 to Rs 10,000.
�The Commission will strictly monitor the expenditure of the candidates and the required action will be taken if any candidate is found to violate the rules,� added Dutta.
In the first phase scheduled on January 30, Tinsukia, parts of Dibrugarh, Jorhat, Sivasagar, Golaghat, Kaliabor and Nagaon Sadar, Lakhimpur and Dhemaji districts will go to the local polls.
The second phase fixed on February 6 will see parts of Dibrugarh, Sonitpur, Darrang, parts of Kamrup rural, Nalbari, Barpeta, Bongaigaon, parts of Dhubri, Kamrup (Metro), and parts of Morigaon district going to the polls.
In the third phase scheduled on February 12, Cachar, Karimganj, Hailakandi, Hojai subdivision, remaining parts of Kamrup rural, parts of Dhubri, Goalpara and parts of Morigaon district will go to polls.
An approximately 1,27,56804 voters will exercise their franchise across 26,844 constituencies, out of which 420 are Zila Parishad constituencies, 2202 are Anchalik Panchayat constituencies, 2202 are Gaon Panchayat president constituencies and 22020 are ward member constituencies. The votes will be cast across 22,869 polling stations.
The counting will be held on February 14 and 15. The last date for filing of nominations for the first phase of poll is January 2, for the second phase it is January 8 and for the third phase it is January 16. The list of contesting candidates for the first phase will be published on January 8, the list for the second phase will be published on January 18 and the list for the third phase will be published on January 24.