Bhubaneswar: Arrangements are in place to ensure free and fair voting in over 10,000 booths in the fourth phase of polls for six Lok Sabha and 41 assembly seats in Odisha Monday, a senior poll official said.
Polling will be held in Mayurbhanj, Balasore, Bhadrak, Jajpur, Kendrapara and Jagatsinghpur Lok Sabha constituencies and 41 assembly segments that come under them.
While the Central Armed Police Force (CAPF) has been deployed in the critical and sensitive booths, steps have been taken to maintain a close vigil in trouble-prone areas.
This will be the final phase of polling in Odisha, except for Patkura assembly seat, where voting is scheduled to be held May 19 following the death of the BJD candidate.
Over 95.14 lakh voters are eligible to exercise their franchise in 10,792 booths to decide the fate of 388 candidates in the fourth phase.
Arrangements have been made to webcast the polling process at 700 booths, the official said.
Poll vehicles have been provided with GPS tracking system and digital and video cameras will be positioned in the booths, he said.
Over 60,000 polling personnel have been engaged to conduct polling Monday, he said.
Arrangements have also been made for providing tents and chairs in the booths to give respite to the voters from the scorching heat, the poll official said.
Vehicles have been deployed to transport differently abled voters, while wheel chairs and volunteers will be available for assistance at the polling booths, he added.
Of the 95,14,883 lakh electorate, 46,05,694 are women and 615 belong to the third gender.
The fourth phase polling will decide the electoral fate of 388 candidates – 52 in six Lok Sabha seats and 336 in 41 assembly constituencies. The state has 21 Lok Sabha and 147 assembly seats.
Prominent candidates in the fourth phase are BJP national vice-president Baijayant Panda, who is seeking re-election from Kendrapara Lok Sabha seat and BJP’s Pratap Sarangi from Balasore Lok Sabha constituency.
The ruling BJD, has fielded actor-turned Rajya Sabha MP Anubhav Mohanty against Baijayant Panda.
In Balasore Lok Sabha seat, the BJP has pitted its firebrand leader Pratap Sarangi against sitting BJD MP Rabindra Jena. The Congress has fielded OPCC president Niranjan Patnaik’s son Nabajyoti Patnaik in Balasore.
Apart from several state ministers, Niranjan Patnaik is in the race. He is contesting from Bhandaripokhari assembly seat.
Rallies and roadshows marked the campaigning for this phase with top leaders like Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP chief Amit Shah, Congress president Rahul Gandhi visiting the state.
While the first and second phase polls were held April 11 and 18, the third phase was held April 23.