SEC Emphasizes On Conduct Of Safe, Free & Fair Panchayat Polls In Prevailing Covid Situation

Bhubaneswar: State Election Commissioner (SEC) Aditya Prasad Padhi today emphasized on safe, free, and fair panchayat polls in the prevailing Covid-19 situation.

Padhi chaired a meeting of election observers and poll expenditure observers for various districts at the Geeta Govinda Sadan here today.

During the polls, election observers and poll expenditure observers as eyes and ears of the SEC will keep a close watch over the situation across the State and report to SEC on a regular basis.

Election observers will monitor strict implementation of the model code of conduct during the elections. In the current elections, all kinds of rallies have been prohibited and observers have to keep a close watch.

In the upcoming elections, counting will take place at the block headquarters instead of at the polling booths.

The SEC has advised poll observers and district election officials to work in coordination for the same.

On the other hand, poll expenditure observers have been advised by the Commission to monitor the expenses of candidates and political parties, the vehicles used in elections, and to check the regular expenditure list.

The SEC also asked the observers to immediately report to the Commissioner if any candidate spends more than the capped limit.

Poll expenditure observers will coordinate with district election officials and serve as representatives of the Commissioner.

The poll observers have been asked neither to take leave without the permission of the Commissioner, nor travel to any other places.

In addition, the poll expenditure observers have been advised to furnish a detailed report to the Commissioner.

The State Election Commission has appointed 38 election observers and 34 expenditure observers for 30 districts of Odisha for the ensuing elections to the Panchayati Raj Institutions (PRIs) in the State.