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Thursday, Nov 14, 2019

Uttarakhand Panchayat Polls: BJP, Congress claim good show as counting ends

Counting of votes for over 7,000 gram panchayats was completed on Tuesday evening after almost 30 hours. Dehradun was the only district where counting process continued till 4pm.

dehradun Updated: Oct 23, 2019 13:47 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Dehradun
Officials  count votes  at a centre in Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand, October 22, 2019, following a three-phase panchayat elections.
Officials count votes at a centre in Pithoragarh, Uttarakhand, October 22, 2019, following a three-phase panchayat elections. (HT Photo )
         

The ruling BJP and opposition Congress are hopeful of forming maximum district-level boards as counting of votes for the three-tire panchayat election in the state ended on Tuesday.

Top state Congress leaders said their party was far ahead of the BJP in the panchayat polls.

Suryakant Dhasmana, vice president of Congress state unit, said: “In most of the districts, the Congress is far ahead of the BJP be it Pauri Garhwal, Champawat, Bageshwar and other hilly districts. The feedback that we have received from our district coordinators from that we have learnt that for both zila panchayat and kshetra panchayat our party is ahead of the BJP.”

Mathura Dutt Joshi, Congress state unit spokesperson while speaking to the media in Pithoragarh on Tuesday, said, “Out of 12 zila panchayats, we are likely to retain Chamoli, Dehradun, Pauri Garhwal, Nainital and Almora as our authorised candidates plus Congress supporting candidates have won the seats in these districts.”

He said due to victory of wife of ex-minister and seasoned Congress worker Rajendra Bhandari in Chamoli, that seat is sure to remain with the Congress.

“Despite rampant corrupt practices by ruling BJP this election, our party seems to be retaining 40 block development committees (BDC’S) whereas we had 65 block Pramukhs in 2014,” said Joshi.

Reacting to Congress’ claim of being “far ahead of BJP”, Rajendra Bhandari, state BJP general secretary, who was also incharge of the panchayat polls, said, “Our party is sweeping most districts in the Kumaon region, especially US Nagar, Champawat and Pithoragarh. In Garhwal also our performance has been good. Such statements by the Congress only show that they are trying to keep up the morale of their workers but ground reality is different and the Congress is nowhere.”

Counting of votes for over 7,000 gram panchayats was completed on Tuesday evening after almost 30 hours. Dehradun was the only district where counting process continued till 4pm.

Chandrasekhar Bhatt, state election commissioner while speaking to the media after the elections on Tuesday, said, “Both voting and counting process was conducted smoothly in the state this time. No cases of untoward incidents was reported from anywhere in the state. Counting process continued for over 30 hours but it was completed smoothly.”

This time, over 30,000 posts from all categories of gram pradhan, member gram panchayat, member kshetra panchayat and member zila panchayat.

The election commissioner said the reservation list for the post of development block head will be released by October 29 and polling for electing the zila panchayat head and block panchayat head will be conducted after Diwali.

This election will be conducted manually where members will select their heads.