Odisha CEO holds all-party meeting for free and fair LS, Assembly polls
Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India], Mar 12: An all-party meeting here on Tuesday discussed a host of electoral issues where Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Surendra Kumar urged leaders to extend all support in conducting the ensuing Lok Sabha and Assembly polls in the state in a free and fair manner.
Lok Sabha and Assembly polls will be held simultaneously in Odisha in four phases, beginning from April 11. The last phase of polling in Odisha, which has 21 Lok Sabha seats and 147 Assembly seats at stake, will take place on April 29.
Leaders who attended the meeting told ANI that there was a discussion regarding calculation of social media advertisements by the party candidates, declaration of criminal cases, if any, against nominated candidates and other issues.
BJD leader Amar Patnaik told ANI: “The meeting informed all political parties how this election is going to be conducted, particularly to disseminate new guidelines by the ECI issued on March 10.”
“We had objected to the four-phase election in the state, and we still do. In the meeting as well, we raised this issue, but in vain,” he said.
BJP’s Samir Mohanty said: “It was a routine meeting which stressed on the need for the installation of voter-verifiable paper audit trails (VVPATs) along with electronic voting machines.”
CEO Surendra Kumar said: “We discussed among other things the issue of Model Code of Conduct, the documents which can be used as an identity proof by the voters.” (ANI)