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Jharkhand assembly elections to be held in 5 phases from Nov 30, counting of votes on Dec 23

The term of the 81-member Jharkhand Assembly ends on January 5 next year.

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Jharkhand assembly elections to be held in 5 phases from Nov 30, counting of votes on Dec 23
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Assembly elections in Jharkhand will be held in five phases, beginning from November 30, and the counting of votes will take place on December 23, the Election Commission of India said on Friday. 

The term of the 81-member Jharkhand Assembly ends on January 5 next year.

Announcing the poll dates, Chief Election Commissioner Sunil Arora said the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) has come in force with immediate effect. 

The five-phase polling will be held November 30, December 7, December 12, December 16 and December 20, Arora said. 

The counting of votes will be held on December 23, he said. 

Jharkhand is the third BJP-ruled state which will witness assembly election after Prime Minister Narendra Modi returned to power at the Centre with a thumping majority in May Lok Sabha elections.

In 2014 assembly polls, BJP had won 37 seats and formed the government with its ally AJSU Party which has five members in the assembly. Raghubar Das was sworn in as the chief minister of Jharkhand on December 28 2014. He is the first Chief Minister of the state to complete a full five-year term. 

In the outgoing assembly election, the Congress has seven members while its ally Jharkhand Mukti Morcha (JMM) has 19 seats. 

The Congress seemed unhappy with the poll schedule, saying that it wanted the elections to take place in a single phase. 

"We welcome the elections in the state, but it is unfortunate that elections are to be held in five phases. Congress had asked EC that elections should be held in one phase in Jharkhand," RPN Singh, AICC In-charge of Jharkhand Congress, said. 

The BJP has set a target of winning 65 of the 81 assembly seats. 

" JP state unit has been preparing for the elections from past one year. I, myself, have analyzed all the booth level activities and preparations as well. We will definitely cross the target of 65 plus," BJP's Jharkhand In-charge Om Mathur said. 

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