Maharashtra: SEC announces elections to 608 gram panchayats with OBC quota on September 18

Shinde-BJP alliance & opposition set to take credit for the restoration of OBC quota

Sanjay JogUpdated: Friday, August 12, 2022, 09:38 PM IST
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Maharashtra: SEC announces elections to 608 gram panchayats with OBC quota on September 18 | PTI File Photo

The Maharashtra State Election Commission (SEC) on Friday announced elections to 608 gram panchayats in 51 tehsils and direct elections of the sarpanch on September 18 and the counting on September 19. These elections will take place with the seats reserved for OBCs after their quota was recently restored by the Supreme Court. The upcoming gram panchayat elections will witness a tussle between the Shinde camp-BJP alliance and opposition NCP, Uddhav Thackeray-led Shiv Sena and Congress. The Congress party has already declared to go solo while NCP has made a strong case for three parties -NCP, Shiv Sena and Congress- to contest together to checkmate Shinde camp-BJP alliance. Both ruling and opposition will take credit for the restoration of the 27% OBC quota in local bodies.

These are the maiden elections where the sarpanch will be elected directed by the people and not by the elected body. The Shinde-Fadnavis government has already issued an ordinance and it is expected to present the bill in the upcoming monsoon session of the state legislature starting from August 17.

The State Election Commissioner UPS Madan said the elections to 608 gram panchayats in 51 tehsils direct election of the sarpanch in these rural bodies have been announced on September 18 as per the Supreme Court’s order. ‘’At the same time, orders have been given to the respective District Collectors to submit a report to the State Election Commission immediately in case of any natural calamity like heavy rainfall or flood situation at any stage of the election programme. As per the recommendations made by the Dedicated Backward Classes Commission, the seats for the OBCs as per their proportion in the population,’’ he added.

Madan said that the Tahsildar will release the election notice on August 18 while nominations are to be filed from August 24 to September 1 except on August 27, 28 and 31 due to government holidays. Scrutiny of nomination papers will take place on September 2 and the last date for withdrawal of nomination papers will be September 6 till 3 pm. Voting will be held on September 18 from 7.30 am to 5.30 pm while the counting of votes will take place on September 19.

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