Chandigarh: The voting for Haryana Municipal Election 2018 began at 7.30 AM on Sunday and will conclude at 4.30 PM. The general elections of Municipal Corporations and Committees were being held in Hisar, Karnal, Panipat, Rohtak, Yamunanagar, Fatehabad, and Kaithal and of two Municipal committees including  Jakhal Mandi (Fatehabad) and  Pundri (Kaithal). A total of 14,01,454 voters were expected to exercise their franchise to elect the representatives (mayor and members) for 136 wards. However only a few turned up owing to the cold weather. The counting of votes will take place on December 19.

Out of the total voters, 7,44,468 are male voters and 6,56,986 are female voters, stated a spokesman of the State Election Commission on Saturday. The votes for Haryana Local Body Election will be cast through Electronic voting machines (EVM). As many as 1,685 control units and 2,959 ballot units will be used for the polling and 3,921 polling officers, 1,292 presiding officers, 146 supervisors, 83 duty magistrates and 781 reserved staff have been deployed for the purpose.

Out of the total 136 wards, 14 are reserved for scheduled caste, 12 are reserved for scheduled caste women, 14 for backward class and 37 for women. While the BJP and Indian National Lok Dal are set to contest the Municipal Corporation poll on their party symbols, the Congress and Aam Aadmi Party have chosen not to contest the election on their symbol.

Meanwhile, security has been tightened at places where the polling is scheduled, to ensure free, fair and peaceful elections. A total of 7,016 police personnel has been deployed for polling duty. Haryana Director General of Police (DGP), BS Sandhu, informed that all range ADGPs, IGs and SPs concerned have been directed to ensure the peaceful proceedings of the polling.

For Haryana Municipal Election 2018, as many as 1,292 polling stations have been organised, out of which 304 are sensitive and 166 are hypersensitive polling stations, an official revealed. While Yamunanagar district has the highest number of polling stations (303), Rohtak has the maximum number of hypersensitive polling stations (71) and Panipat has the maximum number of sensitive polling stations (71) in the district.

The State Election Commission has advised all the electors of municipal corporations and municipal committees of Jakhal Mandi in Fatehabad and Pundri in Kaithal to carry with them the elector’s photo identity card or any one of the alternative documents for establishing their identity at the polling station, to cast their vote.

(With Agency inputs)