The Election Commission of India (ECI) has decided to extend the polling period for the bypoll to the Serchhip Assembly seat, scheduled to be held on April 17, 2021, by one hour.
As per the notification issued on Thursday by ECI secretary Madhusudan Gupta, the polling period has been extended from earlier 7 am-6 pm to 7 am-7 pm.
The Election Commission (EC) earlier refused to defer polling and counting dates for bypoll to Serchhip Assembly seat in Mizoram
A day after the EC’s rejection to defer the polling date, Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM) on Wednesday appealed to the Commission to extend the duration of polling by an hour.
Mizoram’s main opposition party Zoram People’s Movement (ZPM) made the appeal to extend the polling duration so that the members of a particular church can exercise their franchise.
The Election Commission “has now taken into account the request of extension of polling time to enable all the voters to exercise their franchise as requested by the political parties and as recommended by the Chief Electoral Officer Mizoram”, the notification said.
The Commission issued a notification on March 23 specifying the polling period between 7:00 AM to 6:00 PM on the day of poll on April 17, 2021 (Saturday).
The Commission said now, the polling to the Serchhip Assembly by-election will be held from 7 am-7 pm.
“As consequential amendment to its notification issued in exercise of the powers under Section 150, 30 and 56 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951 (43 of 1951), the Election Commission, having regard to the provision of Section 56 of the said Act, hereby notifies the polling period between 7.00 AM to 7.00 PM on the day of poll on April 17, 2021 (Saturday) in connection with bye-election to 26-Serchhip (ST) Assembly Constituency,” the notification said.
The demand to extend the polling period was raised to enable the members of the Seventh-Day Adventist church to cast their votes after sunset.
The counting of votes will take place on May 2 as per the previous schedule.