Voting for the first of the four-phase Uttar Pradesh panchayat elections began on Thursday morning on a peaceful note in 18 districts with ballot papers.
According to media reports, more than 3.33 lakh candidates are in the fray in over 2.21 lakh seats in the first phase for the posts of Zila panchayat (district council) members, kshetra (block) panchayat members, village panchayat heads, and wards.
“The polling is going on smoothly and no problem is reported from anywhere in the state. The polling, which started at 7 am, will continue till 8 pm,” a senior State Election Commission (SEC) official said to news agency PTI.
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The districts where polling is going on included Ayodhya, Agra, Kanpur, Ghaziabad, Gorakhpur, Jaunpur, Jhansi, Allahabad, Bareilly, Bhadohi, Mahoba, Rampur, Raebareli, Shravasti, Sant Kabir Nagar, Saharanpur, Hardoi and Hathras.
For the post of Zila panchayat members, 11,442 candidates are in the fray from 779 wards, while 81,747 candidates are contesting in 19,313 wards of kshetra panchayats.
Voting begins for first phase of UP Panchayat polls
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For the gram panchayat, there are 1,14,142 candidates for 14,789 posts. For gram panchayat wards, there are 1,26,613 candidates for 1,86,583 seats.
The voting for the second phase will be on April 19, the third on April 26, and the fourth phase on April 29, while the votes will be counted on May 2 along with the assembly election results of five states.