ANDHRA PRADESH

Cabinet meet on June 17 to discuss civic polls issue

Steps to pave way for indirect elections

Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD: With elections to 112 municipalities and 12 corporations slated to be held in September, the State Cabinet meeting on June 17 is expected to ratify amendments to the relevant Acts to pave way for holding indirect polls.

The Cabinet is also likely to approve amendments proposed by the State Election Commission (SEC) to the Acts governing municipal bodies and the conduct of election rules to bring them in consonance with the Representation of People's Act for holding polls in a free and fair manner. The amendments pertain to the model code of conduct, appointment of observers, defacing of public properties and expenditure limit.

EVMs to be used

Meanwhile, electronic voting machines (EVMs) will be used for the first time in all municipalities/corporations.

EC's sets condition

The SEC secretary, Debabrata Kantha, in a press release, said the Government had agreed to provide funds for procuring EVMs. The commission had sent proposals to the Government to provide Rs. 6.76 crores for procuring EVMs. The Election Commission had agreed to loan EVMs if the State procured 25 per cent of those required for the Assembly elections in a span of three years and about 10 per cent in the first year.

The SEC on Monday met the officials of Municipal Administration and Finance departments where it was informed that the delimitation process of wards and reservation of seats would be completed by August 7.

When the SEC requested the Government to fix a deadline for constituting new municipalities, so that elections to all bodies could be synchronised, officials have made it clear that the process of constitution of new municipalities was stopped.

The SEC was contemplating to issue the notification for publication of ward-wise electoral rolls of municipal bodies on August 1 after the completion of the delimitation. In the meantime, the Government has to complete the on-going exercise of reservation of seats and notify them.

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