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Over 5,000 candidates to fight for 1,450 wards

Panaji: After getting its fair share of controversy over delimitation and reservation of wards, 186 panchayats in the state will go for polls on Sunday.The village panchayat elections will witness a two-phase process this time after the high court issued a stay in 15 wards at 10 panchayats.Apart from these 15 wards, ward number 3 of Morlem panchayat will also see a repetition of the election process after no nominations were filed in it. The election process for Chandor panchayat’s ward number 5 has been postponed following the death of one of the candidates.”The voting will begin from 8am and go on till 5pm. We have made waterproofing arrangements after considering the current weather conditions. Apart from heavy police deployment at all polling stations, there are flying squads that will be on patrol all day. All returning officers have submitted their reports and there are no major cases of code of conduct violations,” officer on special duty (OSD) to Goa State Election Commission, Durgaprasad said. Restrictions on sale and consumption of alcohol in poll-bound areas are already in effect and the commission has so far received no reports of illegal liquor seizures. Continuing the trend, the panchayat polls will witness a contest with heavy political influence. The elections have many family members of MLAs and former MLAs testing their fortunes.
Despite the polls not being fought on party lines, politically-backed panels will give an idea of the public opinion about the coalition government.The BJP has played it safely by taking a back seat in Saligao, Porvorim, Madkai and Siolim to keep its coalition partners happy.The AAP has also announced that is backing candidates. Congress has stayed away from the polls, but some of its leaders have actively campaigned in their constituencies. [TOI]

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