Panchayat elections: Odisha reports 77.2 per cent voter turnout in first phase

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

Bhubaneswar: A total of 77.2 per cent of the 67.51 lakh voters have exercised their franchise in the first phase of panchayat elections in Odisha, the State Election Commission (SEC) said on Thursday.

The SEC said that it is 0.55 per cent higher than the corresponding phase of rural polls in 2017, reported PTI.

Boudh district registered the highest voters’ turnout of 84.7 per cent, while Ganjam recorded the lowest at 64.96 per cent, SEC Secretary RN Sahu said.

Other districts that recorded more than 80 per cent polling are Deogarh (83.75), Angul (82.6), Jharsuguda (82.1), Kalahandi (81.1), Subarnapur (81.56), Nabarangpur (80.54) and Koraput (80.2).

Maoist hotbed Malkangiri recorded 77.86 per cent polling, he said. The election was held for 200 Zilla Parishad seats at 22,379 booths in 1,669 panchayats in 71 blocks of the state.

Polling for 13 ward members, six sarpanches, three panchayat samiti members and one ZP member was countermanded due to the death of contesting candidates.

The district administrations of four districts have recommended repolling in 25 booths. Twelve people were arrested for allegedly rigging elections in a booth in Rudrapur gram panchayat in Jajpur district.

Action was taken after a video showing the booth capture went viral on social media.

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