Rajya Sabha election scheduled for March 26 postponed amid Covid-19 lockdown

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Mar 24, 2020, 01.16 PM(IST)

Rajya Sabha. Photograph:( WION )

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A total of 55 Rajya Sabha seats of 17 states were being vacated in April. 

The Election Commission of India has postponed the Rajya Sabha elections due to the threat of coronavirus. 

The 18 Rajya Sabha seats of seven states were to be polled on March 26. It is accepted that now the new date of polls will be discharged simply in the wake of getting alleviation from COVID-19.

A total of 55 Rajya Sabha seats of 17 states were being vacated in April. On March 26, the Commission issued notification for elections to these seats. Most of the seats in several states including Haryana, Himachal Pradesh have been elected unopposed. Only 18 Rajya Sabha seats were to be elected through voting.

Nearly 500 coronavirus cases have been reported in India so far, according to Health Ministry data on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, as many as 30 states/UTs have been placed under complete lockdown even as the number of coronavirus COVID-19 cases have reached 471 across India by Monday evening. The death toll from the highly contagious infection stood at nine.

The Centre has also decided to restrict all domestic transport services—railways, flights and interstate buses—across the country on a massive scale that has never been witnessed by the country.

All domestic flights from midnight on March 24 have been cancelled. However, these restrictions will not apply to cargo flights.

"Airlines have to plan operations so as to land at their destination before 2359 hours on 24/3/2020," the Ministry said in a statement.

The deadly coronavirus has claimed 16,524 lives and infected 379,080 people globally.  

(With inputs from agencies)