Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh) [India], April 15 (ANI): Voting for the first of the four-phase Uttar Pradesh panchayat elections, commenced on Thursday in 18 districts. Polling, with ballot papers, began from 7 am and will go on till 6 pm with COVID-19 protocols in place.
Vijay Kumar Mishra, Resident Magistrate, Panchayat Election, Ayodhya, told ANI, “In Ayodhya, the main issues in the minds of the voters include development, drainage, electricity, water and roads.”Speaking about security arrangements he said, “Police inspected three polling booths built in village Sirsinda in Ayodhya. Police have seized mobile phones of about a dozen panchayat election agents.”Voting is underway with all the COVID guidelines in place, he added.
Meanwhile, residents of Vantangia villages cast their votes for panchayat polls, for the first time ever, said an election official.
“The villages were declared revenue village by Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in 2018. Voting for the first phase of UP Panchayat polls are being held today”, said an official.
During the first phase of Uttar Pradesh Panchayat polls voters were seen queued up outside the Ajitpur Primary School – designated as a polling booth – in Rampur.
In Ayodhya too, people were seen standing in a queue at a polling booth awaiting their turn to cast vote.
According to the Uttar Pradesh State Election Commission (UP SEC), Ayodhya, Agra, Kanpur, Ghaziabad, Gorakhpur, Jaunpur, Jhansi, Prayagraj, Bareilly, Bhadohi, Mahoba, Rampur, Raebareli, Shravasti, Sant Kabir Nagar, Saharanpur, Hardoi and Hathras are the districts that are undergoing polling in the first phase of Uttar Pradesh Panchayat polls.
Prayagraj witnessed a voters’ turnout of 9.11 per cent till 9 am.
More than 3.33 lakh candidates in the fray in over 2.21 lakh seats in the first phase for the posts of zila panchayat (district council) members, kshetra (block) panchayat members, village panchayat heads and wards, as per the data of the UP SEC.
As per UP SEC, for the post of zila panchayat members, 11,442 candidates are in the fray from 779 wards, while as many as 81,747 candidates are contesting in 19,313 wards of kshetra panchayats and for the gram panchayat, there are 1,14,142 candidates for 14,789 posts. For gram panchayat wards, there are 1,26,613 candidates for 1,86,583 seats. (ANI)