Covid-19 and Bihar polls: Ball is in Election Commission's court, says BJP leader Vinay Sahasrabuddhe

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-Nirendra Dev 

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EC will decide over Bihar Assembly Election says Dr Shahasrabuddhe during a video conference
New Delhi: Amid speculation on how would Bihar election campaign and the entire poll process would go due to the ongoing Coronavirus crisis, a senior BJP leader Dr Vinay Sahasrabuddhe on Friday said the ball is in Election Commission's court.
"As far as Bihar election is concerned... It is for the Election Commission to assess the situation. The commission is empowered to take a call whichever way it wants to - whether postponement, preponement or changing the schedule or whatever. The EC is a compelling body and Constitution mandates it," Dr Sahasrabuddhe told reporters during a video conference.
To a question on assembly by-polls for 24 seats in Madhya Pradesh, he said, "Every political party has to remain in an ever-ready kind of mode when it comes to elections. When 24 legislators in Madhya Pradesh and quit and changed over, it is natural that we prepare ourselves for the elections".
Therefore, he said, "The party machinery is very active, and whatever can be done, our organisation is well oiled to undertake that preparatory exercise".
In 2015, the BJP had contested Bihar polls on its own and was humbled in the battle after JD(U) had decided to go together with the Congress and the RJD.
However, at a later stage, Nitish Kumar's JD(U) parted ways with RJD and Congress and is at present heading an NDA Government with BJP as its key partner.
Answering a question on how would Covid-19 and the mandatory social distancing required would impact the manner elections are fought in future, BJP national vice president Dr Sahasrabuddhe said, "Even as part of a global community, we are still not in a position to envisage as to how long we have to fight with this (Corona virus). This kind of a pandemic does not have any limitation of any geography neither time factor."
"Therefore, one does not know how long and what would be the future impact of this kind of a pandemic. It will be too early to assess anything. At the same time, we cannot look at it in a very simplistic manner that this crisis will last only a few months and so on," Dr Sahasrabuddhe said.
In Bihar, JD(U)-BJP and LJP created a formidable alliance before the Parliamentary polls, and the combine could pick up as many as 39 seats out of 40. The coalition made a fantastic rainbow coalition of upper castes, non-Yadav OBCs and Dalits.
In Parliamentary polls, BJP won all 17 seats it contested, JD(U) could pick up 16, and six seats went to LJP of Ram Vilas Paswan. Only Kishanganj seat had gone to the Congress.
Recently, one JD(U) leader said, "We see no reason that things have changed since 2019 Lok Sabha polls".