SEC puts off ULB polls in western Odisha
The State Election Commission (SEC) on Thursday announced not to conduct elections to 25 urban local bodies in the nine Western Odisha districts along with others on Sep 19 in view of the ongoing agitation over a permanent bench of High Court. The decision was taken as per the suggestions of the district collectors and SPs. The districts in which the ULB elections have been deferred include, Balangir, Bargarh, Deogarh, Jharsuguda, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Sambalpur, Subarnapur and Sundargarh.
State Election Commissioner Ajit Kumar Tripathy told mediapersons that the next steps on holding elections will be taken after consultations with the Home and Urban Development departments and receiving reports from the district collectors.
Filing of nomination papers was completely disrupted in the region after the Central Action Committee of the All Western Odisha Bar Association (AWOBA) intensified agitation since August 20. The lawyers got support from all the major political parties in favour of their demand.
According to the SEC, not a single nomination paper was filed in 20 ULBs in six districts including Balangir, Deogarh, Jharsuguda, Nuapada, Sambalpur and Sonepur which reported a complete boycott of nomination process. Now, the polls would be held in 58 notified area councils, 32 municipalities and one municipal corporation (Berhampur) on Sep 19.