May 1, 2021

Counting of votes in UP panchayat polls to be held on Sunday after SC’s nod



Counting of votes for the panchayat polls in Uttar Pradesh shall be held on Sunday with the Supreme Court docket on Saturday refusing to remain the method and the State Election Fee (SEC) saying the candidates and their brokers shall be allowed to enter the counting centres provided that they’ve examined destructive for COVID-19 within the 48 hours previous to the graduation of the counting course of or have taken each doses of the vaccine. In a particular pressing listening to on a courtroom vacation, a bench of justices A M Khanwilkar and Hrishikesh Roy handed the order after paying attention to a number of notifications and assurances of the SEC that the COVID-19 protocols shall be adopted in any respect the 829 counting centres.

The apex courtroom directed that there shall be a strict curfew in the whole state until Tuesday morning and no victory rallies shall be permitted.

It additionally requested the SEC to repair the duty for observance of COVID-19 protocols on the counting centres on gazetted officers.

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  • The bench directed the ballot panel to protect the CCTV footage of the counting centres until the Allahabad Excessive Court docket concludes its hearings on the associated petitions earlier than it.

    It additionally ordered that authorities officers, candidates and their brokers should produce RT-PCR take a look at reviews to indicate that they’re COVID-19 destructive earlier than getting into the counting centres.

    The highest courtroom’s path got here on a plea looking for a path for observance of COVID-19 protocols throughout counting of votes.

    The Uttar Pradesh Prathmik Shikshak Sangh (UPPSS), in a letter dated April 29 and addressed to the chief minister and the state election commissioner, had stated if the counting of votes on Could 2 was not cancelled, the lecturers will boycott polling responsibility.

    In the meantime, UPMSS (Uttar Pradesh Madhyamik Shikshak Sangh) spokesperson RP Mishra stated the election officers have been knowledgeable that the circumstances during which the polling was held and non-compliance of COVID norms led to the an infection spreading to a lot of ballot workers and in addition deaths. On this horrific scenario, going forward with the counting of votes is just not acceptable.

    It additionally stated the kin of the lecturers who succumbed to COVID-19 throughout ballot responsibility be given a compensation of Rs 50 lakh every.

    On April 27, paying attention to reviews in regards to the demise of presidency staff on account of COVID throughout panchayat ballot responsibility, the Allahabad Excessive Court docket had requested the SEC why motion might not be taken towards it and its officers for a similar.

    A two-judge bench of justices Siddhartha Varma and Ajit Kumar handed the order on a suo motu public curiosity litigation matter on the unfold of the coronavirus and the situation of the state’s quarantine centres.

    When contacted, BJP MLC Hari Singh Dhillon, who had urged the chief minister to postpone the ballot outcomes till the COVID scenario improves, stated some lecturers got here to him highlighting their plight.

    Requested to touch upon the lecturers’ name to boycott the counting of votes, SK Singh, Officer on Particular Responsibility on the SEC, stated, “The respective district magistrates should take a call.”

    On whether or not the boycott name would delay the counting course of, he evaded a direct reply and stated all preparations have been made to make sure a clean counting.

    Singh stated the SEC doesn’t have a centralised database of the variety of lecturers concerned within the counting course of.

    “The counting of votes will start at eight am and proceed until all of the poll papers are counted. The whole course of could take two days,” a senior SEC official advised on Saturday.

    Usually, counting of votes takes place in eight-hour shifts, he stated.

    The SEC stated at each counting centre, a well being desk shall be established, the place a health care provider shall be current with medicines.

    These displaying signs of COVID-19 akin to fever, chilly and cough won’t be allowed on the counting centres.

    Everybody getting into the counting centre need to endure thermal scanning, the SEC stated.

    It categorically said that there shall be an entire ban on victory processions.

    The candidates and their polling brokers shall be allowed to enter the counting centres provided that they’ve examined destructive for COVID-19 within the 48 hours previous to the graduation of the counting course of both by means of RT-PCR or by means of Speedy Antigen or on furnishing accomplished vaccination reviews.

    Instructions have been issued to make preparations for sanitiser, cleaning soap and water on the counting centres, and that everybody visiting the centres should compulsorily put on a masks and keep social distancing.

    Voting for the panchayat polls in Uttar Pradesh ended on April 29 with a 75-per cent voter turnout within the closing part.

    Lakhs of candidates have been within the fray for over 7.32 lakh seats within the gram panchayat wards, 58,176 within the gram panchayats, 75,852 within the kshetra panchayats and three,050 within the zila panchayats within the statewide elections held over 4 phases.

    The excessive courtroom had requested the state authorities to conclude the panchayat ballot course of by Could 25.