Odisha Channel Bureau
BHUBANESWAR: Barring minor incidents, polling for the first phase of panchayat elections passed off peacefully in Odisha on Monday.
While polling was boycotted by people at a few polling booths, booths were also captured supporters of candidates at some places. Minor clashes involving supporters of different parties were also reported from some areas.
Polling started at 7 am in 189 Zilla Parishad Zones spread over 29 of the total 30 districts in which a total of 58,28,446 voters were to exercise their franchise in 20,369 booths.
The election of Samiti Members, Sarpanches and Ward Members under the Zilla Parishad Zones were also held simultaneously.
Though exact figures were not available immediately with the State Election Commission, it was said that more than 60 per cent voters cast their votes by the time polling came to end at 12 noon.
The counting of votes started at 1 pm as scheduled all results of the day’s elections were likely to be declared by evening.
The remaining four phases of the rural polls will be held on February 15, 17, 19 and 21. Polling on each of those four days will start at 7 am and go on till 12 noon.