Lack of adequate Central forces and “sheer compulsions” in the interest of free and fair elections forced the Election Commission to opt for a six-phase assembly polls in Bihar, Chief Election Commissioner S Y Quraishi said on Tuesday.

“Left to us, we will also like to do a one-day poll and be done with it if security forces are available”, he said during an interaction with members of the Editors Guild here.

Quraishi said there was a clamour for Central forces from all political parties in the state and the basic requirement was to ensure free and fair polls.

On apprehensions that Diwali and ‘Chhath’ festivals could affect voter turnout in the polls that will spread over 31 days from Oct. 21 to Nov. 20, he said the previous polls were also held almost in the same period and they were not affected.

The CEC said the availability of Central forces was also affected by the fact that they were required for the Commonwealth Games in Delhi.