The Election Commission will announce the poll dates for 5 states today (Representational)
The Election Commission will be announcing the poll dates for five states later today. The states include Tamil Nadu, Kerala, West Bengal, Assam and Puducherry where elections are due in April-May.
Polls are to be held for 294 seats in West Bengal, 234 seats in Tamil Nadu, 140 seats in Kerala, 126 seats in Assam and 30 seats in the Union Territory of Puducherry.
After Bihar, this is the first major set of elections to be held in the middle of the coronavirus pandemic.
Bengal will see the most high stakes battle with two-time Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee facing a tough challenge from the BJP amid an exodus from her Trinamool Congress to the BJP and corruption investigations against her party leaders.
The BJP is also campaigning aggressively to retain power in Assam, where it won for the first time in 2016, beating the Congress.Here are the Live Updates of the poll dates announcement by the Election Commission:
In the last round of polls in these states in 2016, the Congress could win only Puducherry but the party this week lost power in the Union Territory adjoining Tamil Nadu after multiple resignations - a trend seen in other states like Madhya Pradesh and Karnataka where Congress governments crashed because of defections.