New Delhi: The Election Commission of India (ECI) on Sunday announced the Lok Sabha Elections 2019 schedule and dates. Addressing the press conference, Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Sunil Arora also declared that the Assembly Elections in Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Odisha will be held simultaneously with the general elections. (ALSO READ – Lok Sabha Elections 2019 Schedule)

While the polling in Andhra Pradesh, Arunachal Pradesh and Sikkim will be held on April 11 and votes will be cast in Odisha on April 11, 18, 23 and 29. The counting of votes and the results will be announced on May 23.

Meanwhile, the poll body announced that Assembly Elections in Jammu and Kashmir will not be held simultaneously with the Lok Sabha polls. However, it added that the state will have five-phase voting. The state of Jammu and Kashmir has been under the Governor’s rule since June 2018, after Mehbooba Mufti’s People’s Democratic Party (PDP) broke off its alliance with the BJP.

Following the announcement, former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah took to Twitter and expressed his anguish. Meanwhile, explaining the reason for not holding simultaneous polls in the state, the Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora said, “Based on input, constraint of availability of central forces and other logistics, requirement of forces for security of candidates in wake of recent violence and keeping other challenges in mind, the EC has decided at this stage to announce only schedule of Parliament election in J&K.”

The Lok Sabha polls will be held in 91 constituencies across 20 states in phase 1, 97 constituencies across 13 states in phase 2, 115 constituencies across 14 states in phase 3, 71 constituencies across 9 states in phase 4, 51 constituencies across seven states in phase 5, 59 constituencies in seven states and 59 constituencies in eight states.