The elections to the three Municipal Corporations of Delhi (MCD) will be held on April 22, 2017, as per an announcement made by the Election Commission. The filing of nominations will begin on March 27, while the counting of votes will take place on April 25. Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) will be used in the MCD polls.
New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) and South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) account for 104 seats each, while East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) has a total of 64 seats. In total, there will be 272 seats up for grabs, while 1.32 crore voters can cast their votes.
The model of conduct is in place and here are some of the updates:
- Each candidate will be allowed a cash expenditure limited at Rs 5.75 lakh during campaigning.
- The candidates will be allowed to campaign from 5 am to 10 pm, and will not be allowed to campaign at religious places like temples and mosques.
- 17,000 polling staff will be required to organise the poll.
- EVMs will be used at the MCD polls.
Municipal Corporation of India
Municipal corporations in India are state government formed departments that work for the development of a metropolitan city, which has a population of more than 1 million. Municipal bodies of India are vested with many functions including public health, safety and welfare, regulatory functions, public infrastructure works; and development activities which include economic development, social justice, promotion of culture and education and alleviation of urban poverty. These functions are delegated by the state governments to the respective municipal bodies.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal directed the Delhi chief secretary to make the necessary preparations for the upcoming MCD polls.
Raising doubts over EVMs after not receiving the anticipated results in the recently held assembly elections in Punjab and Goa, Arvind Kejriwal on March 13 wrote a letter to the Election Commission requesting that EVMs not be used in the MCD polls and be replaced with ballot papers instead. In fact, several other political parties are also demanding the usage of ballot papers in place of EVMs. However, with the dates of the election already been announced and related preparations under way, the EC denied the possibility of taking up the suggestion.
In the meanwhile, BJP, setting a new trend, decided that it will not entertain dynasty politics and thus would not entertain people only with political patronage. In fact, it has decided not to field any sitting councillor and plans to encourage new faces at the polls who have worked at the grassroots level.