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New Delhi [India], Mar 27: The Karnataka Assembly elections will be held on May 12, the Election Commission of India (ECI) announced on Tuesday.

The counting of votes will be held on May 15, Chief Election Commissioner O P Rawat told the media here.

Issue of gazette notification will be on April 17 and the last date of nomination will be April 24 followed by their scrutiny the very next day. The last day of withdrawal of candidature will be April 27.

In order to ensure smooth polling, Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) will be deployed at all 56,696 polling booths across the state.

A little less than five crore voters will exercise their franchise to elect members for the 224 assembly constituencies.

Rawat also said that relevant measures have been taken to increase the polling percentage from 71.45 percent of 2013.

While the Congress party is trying to retain power in Karnataka, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is pulling all stops to wrestle the southern state into its fold.

Even before the announcement of the election schedule, Karnataka has turned into a political battleground with parties extensively campaigning across the state.

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