Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

A majority of the political parties in Odisha proposed to make the forthcoming Panchayat election alcohol-free during an all-party meeting called by the State Election Commission (SEC) Aditya Prasad Padhi in Bhubaneswar on Saturday.

As per reports, the SEC, who chaired the meet, held discussion on four agendas regarding the preparation of the forthcoming Panchayat elections with the representatives of all political parties.

“Most of the political parties were of the opinion to ban liquor seven days ahead of the election,” Padhi told reporters.

 “The voters’ list will be prepared before the ensuing election without any mistake. The Electors Photo Identification Card (EPIC) id number of the voters will be added along with their names to the list,” said Padhi.

He further stated that usually the voting time was from 7 am to 12 pm. But as this time, there will be a central counting at the block level instead of booths. Most of the political parties are of the opinion to increase the duration of polling period by two more hours.

A detailed discussion was also held on the limits of election expenditure by the candidates, he said.

It has also been proposed in the meeting to increase the limit of election expenditures of Sarpanch and Nominee candidates for the upcoming election.

“Many political parties have proposed to increase the election expenditure of Sarpanch and Nominee candidates from Rs 80,000 to Rs 2,00,000. It has been proposed to increase the amount from Rs 2,00,000 to Rs 5,00,000 for Zilla Parishad candidates,” said Padhi.