Odisha: Peaceful polls with 60% less offences says CEO Nikunja Bihari Dhal

Dhal thanked the voters as well as the polling and security personnel for high voting and a peaceful election.
People show their identity cards while waiting in queues to cast their votes at a polling booth in Jagatsinghpur, on Saturday
People show their identity cards while waiting in queues to cast their votes at a polling booth in Jagatsinghpur, on Saturday PHOTO| DEBADATTA MALLICK

BHUBANESWAR: With around 60 per cent less incidence of electoral offences, general elections 2024 has become one of the most peaceful elections to be held in the state, said chief electoral officer (CEO) Nikunja Bihari Dhal on Saturday.

Around 124 electoral offences including incidence of violation of model code of conduct, social media offences and poll-related violence had been reported these elections, compared to 327 such cases in 2019. Besides, this is the first general elections after 1998 in which not a single Maoist-related incident was reported during voting in the LWE-affected districts, Dhal said.

According to Dhal, enforcement squads have seized around 285 illegal arms since the date of announcement of polls. Around 14,762 of the 20,000 licenced arms were deposited with the police, while around 80,000 people were bound down under CrPC to ensure they do not engage in any kind of violence. This was made possible due to heavy deployment of Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) which was over 100 companies in all phases.

Election-related seizure in the state was also more than six times compared to 2019. A seizure of approximately Rs 280 crore including Rs 20.52 crore cash, Rs 42.33 crore worth liquor, Rs 78.82 crore worth drugs, Rs 14.70 crore worth precious metal and over Rs 122 crore worth freebies and other items were seized. These include around Rs 62 lakh cash, 7.8 kg gold worth around Rs 5.9 crore seized, he said.

The CEO’s office also received 15,060 complaints in the cVIGIL app of which 11,496 (76pc) proved to be genuine. “We have worked in a transparent and disciplined manner and have sought cooperation from all political parties,” he said.

Dhal thanked the voters as well as the polling and security personnel for high voting and a peaceful election. He also informed that the turnout of women voters in the 2024 elections was more compared to their male counterparts.

The Election Commission had set up around 37,898 model polling stations and engaged about 2.5 lakh polling personnel along with a large number of Asha and paramedical workers for the four-phased elections.

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