Special Correspondent

Tumkur has the highest number of 2,062 booths

Polling to be video recorded in all sensitive booths

Bangalore: Over 1.26 crore voters are eligible to exercise their franchise on Saturday to elect members to 2,641 gram panchayats in 16 districts of the State.

The State Election Commission has made all arrangements to hold a free and fair polling, which would be held from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.

A total of 64,02,214 men and 62,60,059 women are eligible to vote.

Polling would be held in 16,965 booths and the personnel already reached their respective stations on Friday. Elections would decide the fate of over 1.16 lakh candidates who are in the fray for 43,791 gram panchayat seats in the first phase in Bangalore and Gulbarga divisions.

Gram panchayats in Bangalore Urban and Rural, Ramanagaram, Chitradurga, Davangere, Kolar, Chickballapur, Shimoga, Tumkur, Bidar, Bellary, Gulbarga, Yadgir, Raichur and Koppal and Udupi and Karkala taluks of Ududpi district go to polls in the first phase. The rest of the districts would go to polls in the second phase on May 12.

The commission has declared 5,440 and 5,736 booths as sensitive and hyper sensitive respectively and deployed adequate number of police personnel to ensure peaceful polling.

The Tumkur district has the highest number of polling booths (2062), sensitive (637) and hyper sensitive (600) booths.

The number of sensitive and hyper-sensitive booths in each district is: 237 and 478 in Bangalore Urban, 166 and 330 in Bangalore Rural, 197 and 136 in Ramanagaram, 452 and 372 in Kolar, 305 and 189 in Chickballapur, 480 and 409 in Chitradurga, 378 and 505 in Davangere, 305 and 189 in Shimoga, 201 and 102 in Udupi, 171 and 109 in Bidar, 528 and 411 in Bellary, 405 and 543 in Raichur, 470 and 575 in Gulbarga, 243 and 254 in Yadgir, and 265 and 534 in Koppal district.

The commission has decided to conduct video recording of polling in sensitive and hypersensitive booths in all districts.

It has received 81 complaints regarding violation of model code of conduct in Bangalore division and 18 complaints in Gulbarga division, according to officials of the commission.

A total of 27,577 candidates belonging to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes — 12,767, backward class category (A) – 29,079 and backward class category (B) – 7,104 and general category – 40,237 candidates are in the fray. No candidates have filed nominations for 43 seats while 3,941 candidates elected unopposed.