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     New Delhi/Raipur, March 30, 2011: In a severe set back to the BJP government in Chhattisgarh, the Election Commission of India today declared the bye poll schedule for the Bastar Parliamentary seat and the model code of conduct has been put in place with immediate effect.

     The bye election for the Bastar Parliament seat, reserved for Tribals, will be held on May 08, next and the counting on May 13, Election Commission today said.

     With the announcement of the poll schedule, the Model code of conduct has been put on place with immediate effect, the Commission said creating a much discomfort situation for the ruling BJP in the state.

     As per the schedule, the notification would be issued on April 11, next, and with that the nomination process would be started and continue till April 18.

     The scrutiny would be held on April 19, where as withdrawal of nomination on April 21.

     Polling would takes place on May 8 and counting on May 13, the Commission said.

     The Election Commission also clarified that the Model Code of Conduct would come into force with immediate effect in the district (s) in which the whole or any part of the Parliamentary Constituency going for bye-election is included.  The Model Code of Conduct shall be applicable to all candidates, political parties and the State Government concerned. The Model Code of Conduct shall also be applicable to the Union Government as far as the States is concerned.

     The Commission has decided to use Electronic Voting Machines in the bye-election in all the polling stations. Adequate number of EVMs has been made available and all steps have been taken to ensure that the poll in these constituencies is conducted smoothly with the help of these machines.

     The bye-poll was being held after the Bastar MP Baliram Kashyap died on March 10, last.

     The poll schedule has caught the state BJP in a surprise as the Bastar Lok Sabha seat was declared vacant only 20 days and the party was now busy in the state assembly.

     The Election would also affect the Gram Suraj Abhiyan of the Chief Minister as Model code of Conduct is in force in Bastar, Dantewada and Bijapur districts.

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