Block chairman election: BJD candidates win in 218 blocks; BJP in 70

Bhubaneswar: The pre-Holi celebration has been reported at the camp of three major political parties as the election to block chairman posts concluded today following panchayat elections.

Victorious Panchayat Samiti members in Panchayat polls casted their votes to elect chairmen of as many as 307 blocks, out of which BJD captured maximum 218 posts followed by BJP, which managed to bag 70 chairman posts.

The leaders and party workers in Sadar block of Balasore celebrated Holi two days before the festival as the party acquired six blocks out of total 12. Similarly, BJP and Congress celebrated the victory by capturing three seats each.

Similarly, the ruling party in Odisha bagged eight blocks out of ten in Jajpur district while Congress managed to capture Korei block of the district with actor MLA Akash Das Nayak’s magic notwithstanding. One independent candidate bagged one block while the saffron party received a major setback in the district.

The Congress claimed to have acquired five seats in Sundergarh while six went to the BJD account while BJP had to be pleased with one seat. Similarly, BJP supported Mukesh Pal captured the Pallahada block.

BJP claimed that their number may rise. “We have the latest information that BJP candidates in 70-72 blocks have been elected. The number is expected to rise”, Prithivraj Harichandan, BJP state general secretary, said.

BJD said it has kept its position intact. “The BJD candidates in 218 blocks out of 307 have emerged victorious. Our party got around 71% seats in block chairman elections,” BJD’s Debashis Samantray said.

Congress too claimed that its base at grassroots is still strong. “It is clear that Congress’ base at grassroots level is still strong when the party captured the block chairman posts,” PCC treasurer Md Moquim said.

On the other hand the election to the post of Zilla Parishad chairman will be held tomorrow. BJD is likely to bag 16 and BJP seven Zilla Parishad Councils. Congress may capture one. The election has been put on hold by HC in Malkangiri and Nuapada districts as polls were not conducted in some of the zones in these districts.