The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Saturday extended the ban on all physical rallies and campaigns till January 31, for the upcoming elections in five states.
However, this ban would be relaxed from January 28 for political parties and candidates who are contesting in the first phased of the election, and from February 1 for those in the fray in the second phase, where polling will be held on February 10 and 14 respectively.
Earlier, the ECI had permitted a five person limit for door-to-door campaigning, but has now allowed for ten persons. The ECI has also allowed video and publicity vans at public places that follow appropriate COVID-19 protocol.
The ECI on January 8 declared the election date for polls to the assemblies of Uttarakhand, Goa, Mizoram, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. Physical rallies were prohibited till January 15, which was extended to January 22, in wake of the third wave of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic that is being driven by the omicron variant of the virus.
The polls will be held in seven phases starting February 10 through March 7, and the counting of the votes will take place on March 10.
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