Bhubaneswar: The State Election Commission (SEC) has decided to use pink and yellow ballot papers during the upcoming urban local body (ULB) elections in the state.
SEC Secretary RN Sahu has issued an order in this regard Saturday.
“In exercise of powers vested in it under Article 243 ZA of the Constitution, the Commission directs that the colour of ballot papers for the corporators & councillors will be pink and the Mayor & chairperson will be yellow,” said the order.
The SEC has already decided that elections to the office of Mayors, chairpersons, corporators and councillors will be held by using electronic voting machines (EVMs) supplied by the Commission.
Two EVMs will be used in each booth for elections to councillor/chairperson in case of municipalities/NACs and corporator/mayor in case of municipal corporations, Sahu said.
So, the ballot papers will be pasted on the ballot unit of the EVM as well as it will be used for the purpose of Election Duty Certificate (EDC) and tendered vote, the secretary said.
Earlier, the SEC has also decided to provide NOTA (None of the above) option to the voters in the upcoming urban polls. The poll panel is taking steps to conduct the urban elections soon after the panchayat elections.
The delimitation of wards, reservation of seats and all other formalities required to conduct the ULB elections has already been completed. The Commission has also started distribution of EVMs to the districts.
Meanwhile, SEC AP Padhi discussed preparedness for the ensuing panchayat polls with district Collectors through videoconferencing.
Padhi said as per the new circular issued for the panchayat elections, no outsider or political leader will be allowed to be present in poll-bound areas after campaigning ends.
Outsiders including political leaders will have to vacate pollbound areas by February 14 evening. They can’t stay there as it will be a violation of the Model Code of Conduct, Padhi said.
Padhi said the first phase panchayat polls are set to be held February 16.