Stage set for civic polls
Campaigning begins, ballot papers for polling
BY OUR STAFF REPORTER
GUWAHATI, February 2: The stage is all set for civic polls in the State on February 9. The last date of withdrawal of nomition papers was on Monday, which also marked the beginning of the election campaign.
Talking to The Sentinel on Monday, HN Bora, Commissioner, Assam State Election Commission, said: “We are fully ready to hold the civic polls across the State. The election campaign has also started from today. We received 3,027 valid nomition papers, some of which were withdrawn today. However, we are yet to ascertain the total number of candidates who will be contesting the polls, as we are still collecting the figures centrally.”
Bora, however, informed that polling will be conducted with ballot papers.
This time civic elections will be held for 32 municipal boards and 42 town committees across the State, he said, adding that polling will be held at 1,748 polling stations located in 746 wards. The number of voters will be 14,84,496.
Polling will begin from 8 am to 4 pm on February 9 and counting of votes will take place on February 12.
Of the 74 municipal boards and town committees, only Bongaigaon, Gauripur, Pathsala, Tihu and lbari town committees are in the hands of Opposition parties, while the rest are in the hands of the ruling Congress.
Political observers said that the civic elections will be a prestige battle for both the Congress and the BJP. “The two parties will fight this year’s civic elections with an eye to the Assembly elections next year,” the political observers added.
Assam Pradesh Congress Committee (APCC) president Anjan Dutta claimed that the Congress will form at least 50 civic bodies in this election. On the other hand, the BJP also claimed that the party will form maximum civic bodies, defeating its rival parties.