The 2019 Lok Sabha elections will be held on time, the Chief Election Commissioner of India, Sunil Arora, said on Friday when asked on the matter against the backdrop of the prevailing tensions between India and Pakistan in the wake of the Pulwama terror attack.
As per news agency PTI, the CEC said "Elections will be held on time" when asked on the matter.
The clarification comes days after India struck Pakistani terror bases across the LoC and avenged the dastardly Jaish-e-Mohammed-perpetrated Pulwama attack in which 40 CRPF Jawans were martyred. A day after the IAF's precision strikes, Pakistan attempted to intrude into India's airspace with a large formation of F-16s, JS-17s and Mirage fighters and made to attack India's military installations. However, the Pakistan Air Force was intercepted and driven back by the Indian Air Force which shot down a Pak F-16 in the air-battle.
Questions had been raised in some quarters over whether the critical 2019 General Elections and numerous assembly polls would go on as per schedule given the situation at the border.
The Modi government's term in office is set to come to an end in the coming weeks and election campaigning is already in full swing. Along with the general elections, elections are also scheduled to be held in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha, Jammu & Kashmir, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh and Jharkhand, likely in the months of April and May.
If the trends of previous elections are adhered to, the Election Commission will make a formal announcement of the election in due course, along with the imposition of the Model Code of Conduct, ahead of the largest exercise of democratic franchise in the world.