Brajarajnagar Bypoll: Parties Asked To Publish Candidate’s Criminal Records In Media

Bhubaneswar: Filing of nomination papers for the by-election to Brajarajnagar assembly seat in Odisha‘s Jharsuguda district began with returning officer-cum-Jharsuguda sub-collector issuing a formal notification on Wednesday.

Briefing the media, Chief Electoral Officer (CEO), Odisha, S K Lohani said the nominations will be scrutinised on May 12 and the candidates are allowed to withdraw their candidature by May 17. “With the announcement of a by-poll for the assembly constituency, the model code of conduct has come into force with immediate effect in the entire district of Jharsuguda. It is applicable to the central/state government agencies /PSUs located in the district,” he added.

According to the notification, nomination papers may be delivered by a candidate or any of his proposers to the returning officer or to Biswakeshan Pandey, OAS, the assistant returning officer, at the sub-collector office, Jharsuguda between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. on any day (other than public holiday) not later than the scheduled date May 11 (Wednesday).

“Candidates with criminal antecedents are required to publish information in this regard in newspapers and through Television channels on three occasions during the campaign period. A political party that sets up candidates with criminal antecedents is also required to publish information about the criminal background of its candidates, both on its website and also in newspapers and Television channels on three occasions,” it added.

A total of 2,14,745 voters, including 3,519 PwDs, are eligible to exercise their franchise in the constituency, which will have 257 polling booths. Voters above 80 years of age and PwD are being distributed Form-12-D to allow them to exercise their options to cast their votes through postal ballots. However, they are also free to exercise their franchises in physical mode by coming to the booth in person.

The CEO further said that 22 auxiliary booths have been created to facilitate the polling during the bypoll, considering the ceiling of 1,250 electors per booth, as directed by the Election Commission.

EVMs and VVPATs will be used in the by-election. As many as 699 ballot units, 686 control units and 700 VVPATs are available in Jharsuguda district for use in the bypoll.

COVID-19 guidelines like use of face mask, thermal scanning and hand sanitisation will be followed on the day of polling, he added.

Notably, the bypoll was necessitated following the untimely demise of MLA Kishore Kumar Mohanty (BJD) on December 30.

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