According to the EC, norms like wearing masks, thermal scanning and social distancing will be followed strictly at all premises being used for poll-related activities
The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Uttar Pradesh will soon be facing panchayat polls. The elections, dates for which have not yet been announced, will be held in the backdrop of farm protests, as the Yogi Adityanath government completes four years in office on 19 March.
The State Election Commission has decided to conduct elections in one district at a time for four posts of Gram Pradhan, Gram Panchayat member, Area and District Panchayat member.
The State Election Commission will review the preparations made in the districts so far ahead of the three-tier panchayat elections. Additional Election Commissioners Ved Prakash Verma and JP Singh, along with State Election Commissioner Manoj Kumar will discuss preparations made so far through video conferencing with the Divisional Commissioners and District Magistrates.
The elections will be held in the shadow of the farmers’ protest, spearheaded in the state by Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) chief Rakesh Tikait. The farmers’ leader had suggested a social boycott of the BJP in the state. Days later, Muzaffarnagar MP Sanjeev Balyan and Buldana MLA Umesh Malik were met with slogans like “Balyan Murdabad” and “Kisan Ekta Zindabad” while on a visit to the village Baiswal, according to a report by The Indian Express.
Uttar Pradesh has 826 vikas khands (development blocks), and 58,194 gram sabhas. There are 7,31,813 wards in the gram sabhas, and 75,855 wards in kshetra panchayats and 30,051 wards in 75 zila panchayats.
For the upcoming panchayat elections, the Yogi-Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government has introduced a rotational system of reservation. This means that if a seat was reserved for the candidates from scheduled castes (SCs), scheduled tribe (ST) abd other backward classes in 2015, this time, the seat will not be reserved for them. Instead, the seats for the categories will be reserved on the basis of their population.
On 2 March and 3 March, the District Magistrate (DM) will publish the list of reserved seats and their allocation, while between 4 and 8 March, objections can be raised in writing before the final list is issued between 10 and 12 March.
Cooperative Bank Loan defaulters, will, however not be allowed to contest the forthcoming Panchayat elections in Uttar Pradesh. If they are willing to contest, they will have to repay the loan to the Cooperative Society and District Cooperative Bank and also present no dues certificate to contest Panchayat elections.
According to the Election Commission, every person has to wear face mask during every election-related activity and thermal scanning of all persons shall be carried out at the entry of the premises used for election purposes. Furthermore, sanitizers shall be made available at all locations. Social distancing shall be maintained as per the extant COVID-19 guidelines of the Ministry of Home Affairs and state government.
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