GUWAHATI, March 5 � Assam will go to the Lok Sabha polls in three phases � on April 7, 12 and 24.
The Model Poll Code of Conduct has also come into effect from 10-30 am today, with the formal announcement of the polls by the Election Commission of India.
While in Assam, the first phase will cover the parliamentary constituencies of No 9 Tezpur, No 11 Kaliabor, No 12 Jorhat, No 13 Dibrugarh and No 14 Lakhimpur; the second phase will cover the constituencies of No 1 Karimganj, No 2 Silchar and No 3 Autonomous District. The third and final phase will witness polls in the constituencies of No 4 Dhubri, No 5 Kokrajhar, No 6 Barpeta, No 7 Guwahati, No 8 Mangaldoi and No 10 Nagaon.
Announcing this at a press conference this evening, Chief Electoral Officer, Assam, Vijayendra said that a total of 1.87 crore voters of the State would exercise their voting rights in the polls.
�For the first time, the electoral process in Assam will be on the basis of photo electoral rolls. The electoral rolls are being continuously updated, and so far we have a photo coverage of 95.75 per cent,� he said.
Compared to last year�s electoral rolls, there has been an increase of 6.6 lakh voters in the State. In 2009 Lok Sabha polls, the number of voters was 1.74 crore. The number of polling stations this year will be 24,275 compared to 18,828 during the 2009 Lok Sabha polls.
There will be 4.5 lakh first-time voters in the State.
Citing intimidation, money power, etc., to be the areas of concern during the conduct of the election, Vijayendra said that observers would be there in sufficient numbers to monitor the activities of the political parties.
�We will also provide a toll-free telephone number to entertain complaints concerning violation of the model code of conduct by political parties. Security forces will also be deployed in sufficient numbers to ensure free and fair polls,� he added.
On the widespread anomalies in voter photo identity cards ranging from mis-spelt names to wrong names and other related information, Vijayendra said that there had been anomalies in voter identity cards in �a few� constituencies but efforts were on to rectify those. He added that the information printed in the cards was based on the information on electoral rolls.
The total cost for the entire exercise of holding the polls � which will also involve 1.25 lakh people � will be Rs 82 crore.
A total of 7,200 polling stations have been declared as sensitive.