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Odishatv Bureau

The three-tier Panchayat elections in Odisha is likely to be conducted on time with the State Panchayati Raj Minister, Pratap Jena on Monday ruling out any possibility of deferment of the forthcoming poll.    

"Till now, there is no possibility of deferment of Panchayat elections. The State government has submitted all the reports to the State Election Commission. The SEC is going to announce date for the polls very soon," Jena told mediapersons. 

"As per the announcement of date by the SEC, the elections will be conducted," he added. 

The Panchayat poll is scheduled to be held in the State early next year. 

The State government has already published the final list of reservations for the post of Zilla Parishad presidents across the State. 

As per a notification issued by the State Panchayati Raj department, four ZP president posts in the districts of Angul, Khordha, Nayagarh and Sonepur have been reserved for OBC candidates. 

Similarly, candidates from the Scheduled Caste (SC) category will be allowed to head the top most tier of the Panchayat Raj system in four districts, namely Cuttack, Jagatsinghpur, Bhadrak and Jajpur.

The ZP president posts will remain reserved for unreserved category candidates in the districts of Kendrapara, Jharsuguda, Deogarh, Puri, Bolangir and Sambalpur. 

Meanwhile, the Opposition BJP and Congress have slammed the State government alleging that it has ignored the OBCs while reserving seats for the category.  As per the list, there are 104 seats reserved for Backward Class Citizens (BCC) and Backward Class Citizens Women (BCCW) in the Zilla Parishad polls. In 2017 election, 236 seats were reserved for the Backward Class Citizens (BCC).

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