Model Code of Conduct has come into force in the urban areas of Andhra Pradesh where polls will be held from Monday.

Andhra Pradesh State Election Commission N Ramesh Kumar attending press conference
news AP local body polls Monday, February 15, 2021 - 17:42

The Andhra Pradesh State Election Commission (SEC) on Monday issued a notification to resume the stalled electoral process for 87 urban local bodies, including 12 municipal corporations, with voting slated to be held on March 10.

The notification pertains to the resumption of the electoral process with respect to 12 MCs as well as 75 nagar panchayats in 13 districts from the stage of 'withdrawal of candidature'.

State Election Commissioner Nimmagadda Ramesh Kumar said: "With the issuance of the notification, Model Code of Conduct has come into force in the urban areas of Andhra Pradesh from Monday. It shall remain in force till the completion of the election process."

The electoral process was stopped midway in March 2020 due to coronavirus pandemic.

"The commission decided to resume the paused election process for urban local bodies from the stage where it was stopped on March 15, 2020 -- from the stage of 'withdrawal of candidature'," the SEC added.

The withdrawal of candidatures will recommence from 11 am till 3 pm on March 2. The last date for withdrawal of papers is March 3, with the publication of the final lists of contestants scheduled for the same day.

The SEC will conduct re-elections in any of the local bodies, if required, on March 13. Votes will be counted on March 14.

The MC polls will be held in Vizianagaram, Greater Visakhapatnam, Eluru, Vijayawada, Machilipatnam, Guntur, Ongole, Chittoor, Tirupati, Kadapa, Kurnoool, and Anantapur.

The commission initially started the elections process for the urban local bodies on March 9, 2020 and proceeded till the stage of scrutiny of nominations on March 14, 2020. It stopped the process midway on March 15 due to coronavirus.

Following these interruptions, Andhra witnessed several skirmishes between the state government and the SEC.

Meanwhile, two phases of the four-phased rural local bodies elections have been completed in Andhra Pradesh.

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