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Haryana panchayat polls: 82% turnout in phase one

Violence reported in several centres, one killed in clash.

Haryana panchayat polls, panchayat polls, voting, panchayat polls voting, chandigarh news Voters queue up outside a voting booth in Bhalauth Village of Rohtak on Sunday. (Below) Outside PGIMS, Rohtak. (Express Photo)

More than 82 per cent polling was reported for the first phase of Haryana panchayat elections, the first to be held under the amended Haryana Panchayati Raj Act, on Monday. One person died in Palwal district, while protests were reported from a few other places.

Panchkula reported maximum participation with a turnout of around 92 per cent followed by 90 per cent at Yamunanagar.

Elections were held in 47 blocks where over 8,900 polling stations were set up. As many as 15,682 panches, 93 sarpanches and 46 members of panchayat samitis were elected unanimously.

The incident in Palwal occurred in the morning in the playground of a government school in Ratipur village where a polling booth was set up. Two groups clashed in the playground and pelted each other with stones. Bir Singh (50), a local resident, was hit and later succumbed to his injuries.

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Police registered a case against 12 persons, though no arrests were made. The incidents forced the officials to halt polling for around an hour.

Protests were reported in Jind where one person was killed on Saturday in an alleged poll-related violence in Rohad village. Protesters blocked roads and raised slogans for around an hour. Later, the Deputy Commissioner and Superintendent of Police arrived and pacified the people.
State Election Commissioner Rajeev Sharma said that stray incidents were reported from Palwal, Mewat, Bhiwani, Rohtak and Fatehabad districts. He added that polling would be conducted again in Punhana, district Mewat, where two EVMs were damaged. “Report of a scuffle outside a polling booth in Palwal was received, but it was unrelated to the election,” he said. He added that the situation would be assessed after the final reports of Returning Officers.

In Fatehabad, results of all 116 panchayats was announced by evening. The counting in some districts continued late into the night. The results of the zila parishad and panchayat samiti elections would be declared on January 28. The second phase of polling would take place on January 17.

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President of Haryana Congress Ashok Tanwar said that the reports from across the state indicate that the situation is in favour of Congress. “A large number of sarpanches being elected are from our party. Even in Chautala village, a Congress sarpanch has won,” he said.

BJP president Subhash Barala thanked people of the state for participating enthusiastically in the election.

He said that people have voted for transparency and good governance as with the new conditions candidates with a clean record will be elected.

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At the time of filing this report, counting was still ongoing in many centres.

First published on: 11-01-2016 at 03:29:18 am
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