The dates for the Gujarat assembly polls were announced today by the Election Commission (EC). The assembly elections in Gujarat will be held in 2 phases on December 9 and 14. The polls will be for 182 seats in the state. The results will be announced on December 18. As the election dates have been announced, the model code of conduct has been enforced from today. This means that the existing government will not be able to make any new announcements or launch any new schemes that can potentially influence the voters. However, the EC has come under attack from opposition parties such as Congress that are blaming the EC for colluding with the BJP. The opposition parties are blaming the EC that it has deliberately delayed the announcement of the election dates, allowing BJP the time to announce several new programs that can influence the voters.
However, the EC has denied all such allegations. Responding to the allegations, Chief Election Commissioner A K Joti said that there is no truth in the allegations. He said that the EC has already provided valid reasons for delaying the announcement of election dates in Gujarat. Joti also said that it is a wrong approach to compare past decisions with existing decisions since situations keep changing and decisions need to change accordingly. Joti pointed out that floods had occurred in Gujarat and many government employees were busy with providing flood relief. This was one of the key reasons why Gujarat assembly elections could not be held earlier.