Ranchi: Filing of nominations for the first panchayat polls in Jharkhand began Thursday, an official said.
People in Jharkhand will elect representatives to local bodies for the first time since the creation of the state in 2000. The notification of the first phase of the five-phase polls was issued Wednesday.
A total of 1,348 Gram Panchayats, same number of Samitis and 137 district councils will go to polls in the first phase Nov 27. The nomination process will continue till Nov 3 and withdrawal of names will take place Nov 8 and 9. The scrutiny of nomination papers will take place from Nov 4 to Nov 6.
The five-phased polls will take place Nov 27, Dec 6, Dec 13, Dec 20 and Dec 24. The poll process began Oct 27 with the notification of the first phase.
The last local bodies poll took place in 1979 when Jharkhand was part of Bihar.
After the formation of the state, the polls were delayed due to a legal battle over Panchayat (Extension to Scheduled Areas) Act (PESA) Act 1996. The Supreme Court in January directed the state Election Commission to hold the elections under provisions of PESA Act.
Under the PESA Act, the posts of panchayat head have been reserved for tribals. The non-tribals had moved court seeking de-reservation in areas where tribal population is less than 50 percent.
The Jharkhand government is determined to hold the elections as scheduled and it has sought 250 companies of central forces to ensure peaceful conduct of the polls.