West Bengal Election Commission announces December 19 as date of elections to the Kolkata Municipal Corporation, BJP objects as matter is in High Court

Published : November 25, 2021 20:20 IST

Sourabh Kumar Das, West Bengal State Election Commissioner, announcing the date of elections to the Kolkata Municipal Corporation, on November 25. Photo: PTI

The Bharatiya Janata Party had moved the Calcutta High Court demanding that elections to all the 122 municipal bodies be held on a single day. The next hearing in the matter is on November 29.

The much-awaited elections to the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) will take place on December 19, as announced by the West Bengal State Election Commission on November 25. The tenure of the elected representatives, including the Mayor, ended in May 2020, but fresh elections could not take place owing to the COVID pandemic. Since then the KMC has functioned under a board of administrators led by the outgoing Mayor himself, Firhad Hakim.

The date for the KMC elections was announced in a notification issued by the State Election Commission, and the hours of polling was fixed from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. There are 40.48 lakh voters in the 144 wards under the KMC. December 1 is the last day for the filing of nominations, and on December 22 the election process is expected to be completed. Announcing the elections, State Election Commissioner Sourav Das said, “There will be 4,742 polling booths. The filing of nomination starts from today (November 25) and will continue till December 1. The last date for withdrawal of candidatures is December 4. The polling and election campaign will take place adhering to all COVID protocols."

Earlier, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the main opposition party in the State, had moved the Calcutta High Court demanding that elections to all the 122 municipal bodies be held on a single day. The hearing is still pending in the court. Samik Bhattacharya, State BJP spokesperson, said, “We are not accepting the date of the polls. We will let our stand be known on November 29 (when the case is scheduled for hearing in the High Court); and if necessary we will move to a higher court. But the BJP cannot accept the manner in which the date of elections is being announced.”

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