Hyderabad: The Telangana State Election Commission has started the process of conducting elections to Greater Warangal Municipal Corporation (GWMC) and Khammam Municipal Corporation along with the municipalities of Siddipet, Nakrekal, Achchampet, Jadcherla and Kotthur as well as vacant seats in Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation and other urban local bodies.
State Election Commissioner C Parthasarathi issued a notification for publication of voters list and identification of polling stations, besides instructing the officials to make necessary arrangements for holding the polls in a smooth manner.
In a video conference with the district collectors, additional collectors (local bodies) and municipal commissioners on Wednesday, Parthasarathi said the Commissioner and Director of Municipal Administration (CDMA) has been appointed as the State Election Authority to oversee the entire election process including arrangements pertaining to staff, material, setting up polling stations, security, printing of ballot papers, supply of indelible ink and other such arrangements in consultation with the officials concerned. He made it clear that the rules and guidelines published prior to the general elections, will be applicable to the municipal elections and asked the officials to follow them for conducting the municipal polls.
The SEC directed the officials to publish the ward-wise final voters list for the municipal elections on April 11 and release the list of polling stations on April 15. In accordance with the notification issued already for identification of polling stations, he advised them to retain majority of the polling stations which were used for the previous elections in the respective urban local bodies. The Returning Officers (RO) were instructed to submit the list of Assistant Returning Officers (ARO) to the State Election Authority (CDMA) by April 7 which will be approved by the latter by April 8 and forwarded to the District Collectors for making necessary arrangements. Similarly, the training programmes for the ROs and the AROs will be conducted before April 12.
The officials concerned were directed to arrange for adequate number of ballot boxes by taking up repairs, if any, to prevent any last minute problems in the electoral process. They were asked to make all arrangements in advance for printing the ballot papers in the prescribed format, immediately after the list of contesting candidates is finalised. “The Model Code of Conduct will be applicable for the entire municipal body soon after the election notification is issued. The SEC will appoint a general observor and an expenditure observer for all the ULBs towards which the district collectors should make necessary arrangements,” he added. He asserted that the entire polling process should be organised in a planned manner in strict adherence to the Covid-19 guidelines at the polling stations.
CDMA Satyanarayana, SEC secretary Ashok Kumar and other officials attended the meeting.