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Jharkhand Panchayat Polls: Counting For 1st phase to begin today

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Ranchi, May 17: Counting of votes for the first phase of the panchayat elections in Jharkhand will start on Tuesday amid tight security, an official said.

The first of the four-phase panchayat polls took place on May 14. Over 68 per cent of the 52 lakh voters exercised their franchise.

Jharkhand Panchayat Polls: Counting For 1st phase to begin today

A total of 1,127 panchayats covering 72 blocks in 21 districts of the state went to the polls in the first phase. Panchayat elections in the state are not held on party lines. SEC secretary Radhe Shyam Prasad said, "The counting for the first phase (of the elections) will start from 8 am on Tuesday. It will continue till the evening."

As the polling was conducted in ballot papers, it will take time to declare the final results, the official said. In the first phase, elections were scheduled to be held for 16,757 posts - 14,079 panchayat members, 1,127 mukhiyas, 1,405 Panchayat Samiti members and 146 Zilla Parishad members.

However, a total of 6,231 candidates have already been declared winners unopposed in the first phase, as only one candidate was left in each of those posts after withdrawal and rejection of nomination papers.

So, the elections were held for 9,819 posts-7,303 panchayat members, 1,117 mukhiyas, 1,256 panchayat committee members and 143 Zilla Parishad members.

The other three phases of the elections will be held on May 19, 24 and 27. Meanwhile, re-polling in 26 booths across eight districts passed off peacefully on Monday with 59.14 per cent voter turnout, Prasad said. The SEC had received complaints regarding ballot paper errors from several booths during the polling on Saturday.

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