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  1. Lok Sabha Election 2024 dates: EC to announce voting schedule on Saturday

Lok Sabha Election 2024 dates: EC to announce voting schedule on Saturday

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3 min read • Updated: March 16, 2024, 12:50 PM

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Lok Sabha election dates announcement: The Election Commission will address a press conference at 3 pm on Saturday, March 16 to declare the schedule for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections 2024. The polls will be held in multiple phases, as the voting has to be conducted in 543 constituencies spread across the country.

Newly appointed Election Commissioners Sukhbir Singh Sandhu (left) and Gyanesh Kumar (right), with Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Singh (centre) (Image: X/@ECISVEEP)

Lok Sabha election dates announcement: The Election Commission of India will declare the schedule of Lok Sabha elections – the nationwide polls to elect the central government on Saturday, March 16. The schedule will entail the phase-wise polling dates across the 543 parliamentary seats, along with the date when the counting of votes will be held.

The polling schedule will be presented at 3 pm, in a press conference to be addressed by Chief Election Commissioner Rajiv Kumar, along with the two newly appointed election commissioners Gyaneshwar Kumar and Sukhbir Sandhu.

The Election Commission, in a statement issued on social media, said it would also be unveiling the dates for elections to “some state assemblies.” This announcement is likely to pertain to the polls in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Sikkim, where the tenure of the incumbent state Assemblies is scheduled to expire in June.

The general elections are expected to be held in multiple rounds spread across April and May. The polling exercise is likely to be completed in May, as the new government has to take charge before June 16, 2024, when the term of the incumbent Lok Sabha will expire.

MCC to come into effect

With the declaration of the Lok Sabha election dates, a nationwide Model Code of Conduct (MCC) will come into effect. This will prevent the government from announcing a new scheme or unveiling any change in the existing policies.

The MCC also regulates the electioneering activities of political parties and individual candidates.

How many Indians are eligible to vote?

A total of 96.8 crore Indians are eligible to cast their votes in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, the Election Commission said last month. This is 6% higher as compared to 89.6 crore voters who were eligible to vote in the 2019 elections.

The first-time voters in the 18-19 age group has increased to 1.85 crore, from 1.5 crore in the last general elections, as per the data shared by the polling body on February 10.

The total number of eligible male voters has come in at 49.7 crore, higher than 46.5 crore voters in 2019. Similarly, the number of eligible female voters has increased to 47.1 crore from 43.1 crore in the previous elections.

Cost of elections

The 2019 elections were held at a cost of $8 billion or ₹55,000 crore, as per the Centre for Media Studies.

“In 20 years, involving six elections to Lok Sabha between 1998 and 2019, the election expenditure has gone up by around six times from ₹9,000 crore to around ₹55,000 crore,” stated the report, released in 2019.

The expenditure incurred in conducting the last general elections was higher as compared to the 2016 US Presidential polls, which involved a total spending of $6.5 billion, as per the statistics shared by the Center for Responsive Politics