Odisha Panchayat Polls: 67.51 lakh voters to decide fate of 726 ZP candidates in 1st phase

Bhubaneswar: With few hours left for the three-tier Panchayat Polls, preparations for the same have reached the final stage in all districts under the supervision of State Election Commission (SEC) Odisha.

Elaborate arrangements have been made to ensure smooth conduct of the elections. Over 2.79 crore voters will exercise their franchise in total 91,913 wards of 6,794 Gram Panchayats across all districts. Of the total 91,913 polling booths, 13,785 have been identified as sensitive, State Election Commissioner Aditya Prasad Padhee.

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In first phase, polling will be held for 200 Zilla Parishad member posts in 1,669 Gram Panchayats under 71 blocks with total 726 persons in fray. Over 67.51 lakh people will cast their vote to be held at 22,379 booths, of which 3,357 have been identified as sensitive.

Meanwhile, security has been beefed up for the elections. Total 225 platoons of police force comprising 37,245 cops will be deployed to maintain law and order.

As announced earlier, the Panchayat elections will be held in five phases on February 16, 18, 20, 22 and 24 with strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols. Counting of votes and declaration of results will be done at block level on February 26, 27 and 28.

Polling will be held from 7 am to 1 pm.

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Voters, whose names are included in the ward-wise voters’ list, will be allowed to exercise their franchise.

At the time of polling, each voter is required to produce Electors Photo Identity Card (EPIC) or any of the 13 other documents approved by the SEC.

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