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Rashmi Ranjan

Irate over missing of their names in the voter list, some people from Dongria Kondh community in Chatikona village under Niyamgiri area of Rayagada district, seized a ballot box from the booth during the third phase voting for the three-tier panchayat elections on Sunday.

According to sources, some members of the community took away the ballot box from the booth number-14 at Railima village under Sunakhanda panchayat in the district as a mark of protest after they could not exercise their franchise due to missing of their names from the voter list.

The community, who were supposed to cast vote after a long gap of 15 years, alleged that names of over 100 persons of Upper and Lower Musudi area were missing in the electoral roll.

Even though the Sub Divisional Police Officer and other top administrative officials tried to convince the Kondhs to return the ballot box, the agitators are hell bent on not returning the box, source informed.

Notably, Niyamgiri area comprises 11 Wards and as many as 1,619 eligible voters.

In another incident, police achieved a major success after detecting a live tiffin bomb planted by Maoists from near a bridge near the Niyamgiri hill.

It is suspected that the explosive was planted by the rebels with an intention to target the security forces and disrupt the election process. The entire area has been cordoned and combing operation has been intensified by the security forces.

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