Bhubaneswar: The wait is over,finally. Puttting and end to all sorts of speculations and accusations and counter accusations, the Election Commission of India (ECI) today announced to conduct the voting for by-election for Bijepur assembly constituency in Bargarh district on February 24.
The ECI also declared that the counting of votes and announcement of the result will be conducted on February 28.
The announcement of date for the bypoll comes five months after the Bijepur seat fell vacant since August 2017.
Earlier the BJD and the Congress had alleged that the BJP is somehow trying to influence the Election Commission to delay the Bijepur by-poll date.
Notably, the Bijepur by-poll was necessitated following the death of sitting Congress MLA Subal Sahu on August 22, 2017.
As per rules, the bypoll should be conducted within six months of the post lying vacant but in case of any pending petition challenging the election of a legislator, the six-month duration is considered from the date of the disposal of the case.
Earlier on October16, 2017, the Orissa High Court had concluded hearing on the petition filed by BJD leader and Rajya Sabha MP Prasanna Acharya challenging the election of late Bijepur MLA Subal Sahu.