Uttarakhand panchayat election: Polling for first phase underway in Haldwani

Uttarakhand panchayat election: Polling for first phase underway in Haldwani

Polling for the first phase of panchayat election in Uttarakhand is underway in Haldwani and other areas.

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Updated: Oct 05, 2019, 11:19 AM IST

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DEHRADUN: Polling for the first phase of panchayat election is being held in Uttarakhand on Saturday amid tight security.

Polling is being held in 30 blocks, including Haldwani, under the first phase of panchayat elections here. 

Representatives of various polling parties had earlier visited the polling stations to see the arrangements made for the first phase of panchayat polls. In view of the panchayat election, the Indo-Nepal border has been sealed.

The international bridge at Jhulaghat under the Munakot development block was closed on Thursday evening. This swing bridge will now be opened after voting ends at 5 pm on Saturday.

The State Election Commission had earlier issued instructions to the concerned District Election Officers, along with necessary guidelines, to ensure all necessary arrangements are in place for the smooth conduct of the poll process. 

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The State Election Commission had on September 13 announced the dates for holding the panchayat election in the state. The elections will be held in three phases from October 5 to October 16. The results will be declared on October 21.

While notifying the poll schedule, Uttarakhand State Election Commissioner Chandrashekhar Bhatt said that the Panchayat elections will be conducted in 12 districts of the state, except Haridwar, from October 5 to October 16.

Earlier in June, Uttarakhand Assembly had passed the Uttarakhand Panchayati Raj (Amendment) Bill, 2019, which bars people with more than two children from contesting panchayat election. 

The bill was passed unanimously by voice vote amid the continuing bedlam in the House by the Opposition insisting on a debate on a video purportedly showing “some people close to the chief minister negotiating a monetary deal”.

The amendment approved, makes it mandatory for panchayat poll candidates to have passed class 10. While women and SC/ST male candidates need to pass only class eight, SC/ST women need to pass only class five to be eligible to contest in rural polls.

It also states that people with more than two living children, one of whom is born 300 days after the enforcement of the new law, would not be eligible to contest rural elections.

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