Voting begins for polls to W. Odisha civic bodies, to continue till 5 pm

Bhubaneswar: A day after the end of high profile campaigning, voting has begun today at 8 am amid tight security for the elections to 20 Urban Local Bodies of nine districts of western Odisha. The polling will continue till 5 pm.
An estimated 4.93 lakh urban voters would decide the fate of 1,102 candidates in the fray for the post of councilors in 301 wards.
Elections are being held in eleven NACs, including Patnagarh, Kantabanji, Barpali, Padmapur, Kesinga, Junagarh, Khariar Road and Khariar, Kuchinda, Binka and Tarava and nine municipalities such as Baragarh, Deogarh, Brajarajnagar, Jharsuguda, Sonepur, Biramitrapur, Rajgangpur, Sundergarh and Bhawanipatna.
As many as 560 polling booths have been created out of which 53 booths have been identified as hyper sensitive and 329 as sensitive. All the district collectors and SPs have been directed to make elaborate security arrangements for free and fair elections.
The Biju Janata Dal fielded candidates in all 301 wards followed by BJP in 268 while 240 candidates are contesting on Congress tickets.
Though all political parties had boycotted the ULB polls notified on August 12 in the first phase for 91 ULBs, including 25 civic bodies in western Odisha, expressing their solidarity to the movement over the demand for setting up of High Court bench, this time, all major political parties have taken part in the poll process.