Bhubaneswar: Barring stray incidents of violence and attempted booth capturing in districts like Cuttack, Nayagarh, Jajpur and Kendrapara, the fourth phase of the ongoing Panchayat elections was held today peacefully.
Polling was held in 1,151 gram panchayats and 164 Zilla Parishad segments under 67 blocks in 27 districts. An estimated 46.47 lakh voters exercised their franchise in 16,362 booths to choose their candidates.
All security arrangements were made for peaceful, free and fair poll today. Voting was recorded from 7 am to 12 noon. The average polling percentage stood at 70.66 percent. While Jagatsinghpur and Gajapati district with 78 percent recorded the highest polling percentage, Keonjhar remained at the bottom with 61 percent.
Bari and Jajpur blocks in Jajpur district witnessed incidents of violence, booth capturing and snatching of ballot boxes, sources said. Miscreants snatched ballot boxes from 7 booths in Golkund panchayat under the Bari block and dumped them in nearby ponds. They also snatched ballot boxes from two booths of Ratalanga under the same block in the district and dumped them in a well.
Miscreants snatched ballot boxes from two booths in Jahanpur and Chhatis Debil of Jajpur block. Loot of ballot papers was also reported from two booths in Bandhapada and Nurupur panchayat of Bari block.
Apart from this in Sundargarh district people in Sagarpally in Mangeshpur gram panchayat in Tangarpally block boycotted the polls.