Odisha panchayat polls: Polling for first phase concludes

Bhubaneswar: The first phase polling of the three-tier Panchayat election concluded peacefully barring few stray incidents at some places in Odisha on Monday.

The voting that began at 7am continued till 12 pm.

The state election commission (SEC) sources said that over 50% voters exercised their franchise in the first phase polling.

However, actual figure of voter turnout will be known in afternoon on Monday, said an official of SEC.

The election was held in 65 blocks of 29 districts to elect their representatives in 188 Zilla Parishad seats, 1,506 Sarpanch seats, 1,506 Samiti member seats and 20,369 Ward Members seats.

After the polling is over, the counting of votes would begin at 1 pm in presence of the agents of different political parties. After the counting is completed, a list mentioning the number of votes of the candidates will be handed over to the Section Officer.

The SEC has made adequate security arrangements in 29 districts including the Maoist prone districts.

Necessary arrangements have been made for installation of CCTV cameras and conduct videography in hyper-sensitive and sensitive booths.

The official announcement of the names of the winning Ward Members and Sarpanches will be made on February 23 and Zilla Parishad members and Panchayat Samiti members on February 25.