Elections to 18 gram panchayats, where the election process was nullified by the State Election Commission as there was a prima facie evidence of auctioning of posts, will be held on August 8. Three panchayats where polling was countermanded due to death of the contesting candidates will also go to polls on August 8. The commission will issue fresh notification on Thursday (July 25) for elections in these gram panchayats.
Speaking to reporters, SEC secretary Navin Mittal said nominations will be accepted from July 25 and the last date for filing of papers will be July 29. Scrutiny will be done on July 30 and candidates can appeal against rejection of nominations on July 31. The appeals will be disposed of on August 1 and the final list of contesting candidates published on August 2. Polling will be held on August 8 and counting will begin after the polling, at 2 pm, he said.
Mittal said the final poll percentage of the first phase stood at 83.96 percent, whereas in 2006 panchayat elections, first phase poll turnout was 79.73 percent. Nalgonda district topped the list with 90.95 percent, while Adilabad registered the lowest poll percentage of 69.64 percent. In 2006, the overall percentage of all the phases of polling was 81.59 percent, he said.
Second Phase: As many as 6,976 gram panchayats will go to polls in the second phase. Initially, 7,738 panchyats were supposed to be coered in the second phase.
However, 700 candidates were elected unanimously and elections were postponed at 62 panchayats due to heavy rains.
The SEC secretary said the commission has directed district collectors to check the ballot papers carefully before conducting polls. A number of mistakes were found in ballot papers in the first phase, he said. The EC has advised returning officers to make available more rooms for counting at panchayats were the voters are above 10,000, he added.
The commission has found that most of the poll related violence has taken place after polling. Over 1.3 lakh people have been bound over as a precaution, he said.