UP Panchayat polls: Four dead, turnout 80%

Four people were killed and over 36 injured today as violence marred the first phase of 3-tier Panchayat elections across Uttar Pradesh which registered an 80 per cent turnout.

Lucknow: Four people were killed and over
36 injured today as violence marred the first phase of 3-tier
Panchayat elections across Uttar Pradesh which registered an
80 per cent turnout.

Two persons were killed in Mordabad district and one
each in Kannauj and Shahjahanpur during clashes between rival
supporters who used firearms and indulged in brick-batting.

A police jeep and a polling station were torched as
reports of booth capturing and snatchng of ballot boxes were
reported in some districts leading to cancellation of polling.

Tipu, aged 28, was shot dead near a polling booth in
Gadia village in Kannauj district, Additional Director General
of Police Brij Lal told reporters here.

Some persons fired at supporters of a rival candidate
killing two and seriously wounding another in Ahrolla Mafi
village, some 15-km from Moradabad.

The incident happened five minutes before the voting
ended and the dead were relatives of the candidate, District
Magistrate S C Sharma said.

An 85-year-old man died near a booth in Shahjhanpur
district as reports of booth capturing and snatchng of ballot
boxes poured in from some districts leading to cancellation of
polling.

In Akbarpur area in Ramabai Nagar, a police jeep was
set ablaze while a former village head and three others were
arrested after they opened fire and set afire a polling booth
in Nayapur village in Agra.

At least 14 people, one of them a candidate for the
post of Gram Pradhan, were injured in clashes in Kayamganj
Development Block in Farrukhabad.

The candidate for the post of Gram Pradhan was stabbed
in Raehgaon village and was admitted to a hospital where his
condition was stated to be critical.

Five people were injured in Firozabad as rival groups
traded fire and hurled bricks at each other, the ADGP said.

In Chattrapati Shahuji Maharaj Nagar, four members of a
family were injured in a group clash, he said.

In Auraiya district, some persons snatched ballot boxes
in Bainsol village and vandalised a polling station sparking a
clash between locals and police who used force to bring the
situation under control.

The State Election Commission said nearly 80 per cent
polling was recorded in the first phase.

It said reports of booth capturing and other similar
incidents were received from Farukkhabad, Allahabad, Auraiya,
Sitapur, Lucknow, Gorakhpur and other places.

"Polling has been cancelled at some places from where
complaints were received and fresh dates will be announced
later," it said.

In the first phase, voting was held in 223 development
blocks to elect 13,414 village panchayats, 17252 chhetra
panchayats and 1,65,741 panchayat members.

PTI

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