Five-phase Odisha panchayat polls to start from Feb 16

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Panchayat polls
Panchayat polls in Odisha will be held in five phases from February 16. (Photo credit: Pixabay)

Bhubaneswar: The State Election Commission (SEC) of Odisha on Tuesday announced that panchayat polls will be held in five phases from February 16.

The SEC has banned rallies and victory processions in the wake of the pandemic but allowed door-to-door campaigns with only five people, reported PTI.

“Elections to three-tier panchayats will take place on February 16, 18, 20, 22 and 24. Over 2.79 crore people will exercise their franchise from 7 am to 1 pm. The model code of conduct will come into force immediately,” state election commissioner AP Padhi told reporters.

Counting of votes will take place on February 26, 27 and 28, he said.

The polling will be held for the election of members of wards, panchayat samitis and zilla parishads, Padhi said.

The elections will not be conducted in seven gram panchayats – four in Remuna in Balasore, two in Odanga in Nayagarh and one in Bijepur in Bargarh district- as these GPs have been included in the notified area councils.

The SEC had on January 10 held an all-party meeting for the rural elections.

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