Bijepur bypoll date announcement soon: Advisor to CEC

Bhubaneswar: Clearing the air on Bijepur bypoll, Advisor to Election Commission (EC) Bhagban Prakash today said that the EC will announce the dates for the bypoll within the stipulated time frame, as per the rules.

The continuous delay in by-elections to Bijepur constituency has raised many eyebrows with the BJD and the Congress criticising the BJP government for pressurising the EC to delay the bypoll.

“No injustice will be done. EC will announce the dates as per the rule which says the by-election to an Assembly segment should be completed within six months,” said Prakash.

The EC will discuss with the State government to maintain law and order in the region after ensuring that no exam is scheduled during the bypoll and there is no weather-related issue. After completion of all the formalities, the EC will announce the dates, he said.

The Bijepur bypoll was necessitated following the death of three-time Congress MLA Subal Sahu on August 22, 2017. As per the prescribed rule, the bypoll should be done within six months of the post lying vacant. However, in case of any pending petition challenging the election of a legislator, the six-month duration is counted from the date of disposal of the case.

The Orissa High Court had on October 16, 2017 concluded hearing of the petition filed by BJD leader Prasanna Acharya challenging the election of late Bijepur MLA Subal Sahu.