Finally, the wait is over with the Election Commission of India (ECI) announcing the date for elections in Tamil Nadu.
The commission announced there are 5.8 crore eligible voters in the state.
Tamil Nadu will go to polls in a single phase on May 16 and the counting will be held on May 19.
Notification of polls: April 22
Final Date of Nominations April 29
Scrutiny of nominations: April 30
Withdrawal of nominations: May 2
Date of Polls: May 16
Date of counting: May 19
Model of conduct is in effect from Friday onwards.
The announcement comes after a meeting between EC and home ministry officials on March 1 followed by a final round of talks with the Chief Electoral Officers (CEOs) of all states going to polls.
With the election date announced, the model code of conduct will come into force, and the Jayalalithaa government that has been on a spree of announcing new schemes will not be able to announce any new scheme or inaugurate any projects.
All the political parties have been gearing up for the elections with campaigns in various districts, putting out manifestos and finalizing alliances.
Unlike other years, Tamil Nadu is all set to see a multi-pronged fight this year.
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) alliance
DMK has joined an alliance with Congress and DMDK is also soon expected to join the alliance. It is reported that DMK leader Karunanidhi will be meeting DMDK leader Vijayakanth on March 5, 2016.
All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK)
AIADMK has decided to go alone for the elections. They have not announced any major alliance till now. MMK will be going with AIADMK for the elections.
Currently, this alliance consists of BJP and Sarath Kumar’s All India Samathuva Makkal Katchi, Indiya Jananayaga Katchi and New Justice Party. They are expecting DMDK to join the NDA alliance.
People’s Welfare Alliance (PWA)
PWA consists of parties like MDMK, CPI, CPM and VCK. They have invited TMC leader GK Vasan and DMDK leader Vijayakanth for an alliance. But nothing has materialized so far.
Pattali Makkal Katchi (PMK)
PMK has announced it will be going solo for this year’s elections. They had announced PMK leader Anbumani Ramadoss as the chief ministerial candidate.