CEC Sunil Arora at the media briefing on Friday.
Of the five assembly elections, Bengal will be the most high-stakes battle between chief minister Mamata Banerjee’s TMC and the BJP, which has been making inroads into the state, and has already started a high-pitched campaign, inducting several Trinamool Congress leaders to its state unit to dislodge Banerjee. The BJP is also campaigning aggressively to retain power in Assam, where it won for the first time in 2016, beating the Congress.
The Election Commission of India is also concerned about the increasing Covid-19 cases in Kerala. Generally, Kerala is a single-phase poll-going state. However, in the context of Covid-19 cases in the state, the EC may decide to conduct two-phase elections.
In Tamil Nadu, the battle will be between the two mainstays of the state’s politics – the ruling AIADMK and the DMK – while Sasikala and Kamal Haasan may be the X-factor, in the first election without the state’s iconic leaders Jayalalithaa and Karunanidhi. In Puducherry, President’s Rule has been imposed and the assembly kept under suspended animation after the V Narayanasamy-led Congress government resigned earlier this week ahead of a vote of confidence. The Congress had only won in the UT in the last round of polls in these states in 2016 but lost power after a string of resignations.