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Nachika Linga among 2,20,789 candidates for panchayat polls

 As many as 2,20,789 candidates have filed their nomination papers for the three-tier Gram Panchayat elections to be held in five phases from February 13.

"Notwithstanding threat from Maoists, as many as 2,215 candidates have filed their papers in Malkangiri district. Even 12 candidates have filed their papers in the cut-off area of Malkangiri district, considered a den of the Maoists," said State Election Commission (SEC) Secretary Rabindanath Sahu said.

Chasi Mulia Adivasi Sangh president Nachika Linga, who was suspected to have strong links with the Maoists, has filed nomination papers as a candidate for Narayanpatna Zilla Parishad seat before the sub-collector from jail through his lawyer.

Linga's wife Nachika Tikai has also filed her papers for the post of sarpanch from Podapadar gram panchayat.

While 1,56,086 candidates have filed papers for the post of ward members, 33,348 persons filed nomination for sarpanch posts.

Similarly 27,475 persons have filed papers for Panchayat Samiti members, while 3,880 nominations have been received for the post of Zilla Parishad members, SEC officials said.

Sahu said the highest 16,054 nominations have been filed in Balasore district and the lowest 1,908 nominations have been filed in Jharsuguda district.

The scrutiny of nomination papers was going on today, while the last date for withdrawal of nominations is January 21 and the final list of candidates would be published on the same day, Sahu said.

As per the notification issued by SEC, voting would be conducted in five phases on February 13, 15, 17, 19 and 21 in a block-wise pattern and counting would take place on the same dates.

Meanwhile, As many as 70 booths have been identified as hyper-sensitive for ensuing Panchayat elections in Koraput district where videography will be done during voting to ensure peaceful polling.

Polling for the 3,482 posts of ward members, samiti members, sarpanches and zilla parishad members will be held in five phases from February 13 in the Maoist-hit district. The administration has decided to create 2,973 booths for its 7,68,235 voters, officials said.

"The 70 booths will have videography to avoid any allegation of irregularities. List of the identified booths has been finalized and it will be sent to the state election commission," said Koraput district Collector Jaya Kumar V.

With half of the 240 panchayats of the district being Red-hit, the district administration is examining the security aspect of each and every booth to ensure that the poll process is not hit. "At present, the situation is normal and the poll process is going on smoothly," the collector said.

Officials said polling will be held at Lamataput, Jeypore and Dasmantpur blocks on February 13, at Kundura, Semiliguda and Laxmipur blocks on February 15, at Borigumma, Pottangi and Narayanpatna on February 17 and at Boipariguda, Bandhugaon and Koraput blocks on February 19. On February 21, polling will be held at Kotpad and Nandapur blocks.


Précis 2017
From asking his party men to ‘live a simple life and serve the people’ to taunting the BJP for its ‘crocodile tears’, Chief Minister and BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik has not only become politically invincible, he seems to be so in the coming years too.


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