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Gujarat panchayat polls: Voting is taking place in the midst of strict security measures

More than 27,000 polling booths were open for voting in Gujarat's elections to 8,690 local panchayats, which were held amid strict security

Gujarat panchayat polls: Voting is taking place in the midst of strict security measures
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On Sunday, over 10,800 local panchayats in Gujarat voted, a vital litmus test for political parties ahead of the state assembly elections in December.

More than 27,000 polling booths were open for voting in the state's elections to 8,690 local panchayats, which were held amid strict security.

Voters had been lining up since 7 a.m. to elect heads of local panchayats and ward members. The polls will be open until 6 p.m. On December 21, the votes will be counted.

There are a total of 27,200 candidates running for sarpanch and 1,19,998 for panchayat members.

There were 1,167 village panchayats and 9,613 wards designated "completely uncontested," meaning that delegates were elected without opposition.

In addition, the Gujarat State Election Commission reported 473 sarpanches were elected in a "largely uncontested" process (where only one candidate for the office of sarpanch remained after nominations were withdrawn but polling for other seats were held).

Around 10,000 polling booths have been designated as sensitive or extremely sensitive, and the Election Commission has established security arrangements.

Due to the large number of wards, voting is taking place using ballot boxes rather than electronic voting machines (EVMs), according to the state election board.

A gramme panchayat election is contested by a candidate in his or her own right, not as a representative of a political party. The candidate, on the other hand, remains a member of one of the parties.

Each voter must cast two ballots in the gramme panchayat elections, one to elect the sarpanch and the other to elect a panchayat member for his ward.

Over 2,06,53,374 people will cast ballots, with 1,06,46,524 men and 1,00,06,850 women voting.

For the Gujarat panchayat elections, over 5,000 election officials, 1.5 lakh polling employees, and over 58,000 police officers have been deployed.

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