The third and final phase of the Kerala Local Body polls began on Monday with four districts going to polls. Voting began at 7 am at Malappuram, Kozhikode, Kannur and Kasaragod on Monday. According to reports, 7.8 percentage votes were cast until 8:30 am.
The results of the election will be declared on Wednesday. Reports state that long lines of voters were seen outside polling booths. Brisk voting was also reported in the major corporations.
Pictures on social media showed Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan casting his vote in the third phase of the polls, early on Monday morning, at a polling station in Pinarayi, Kannur. The state industries and sports minister EP Jayarajan too was photographed waiting in line to cast his vote at a polling station at the Government Higher Secondary School in Aroli, Kannur.
Voting on Monday is being held for 6,867 wards in 354 local self-government institutions. A total of 89.74 lakh voters, which includes 42.87 lakh male voters, 46. 87 lakh females and 86 transgender persons, will exercise their franchise in the final phase of the Kerala local body polls on Monday.
According to reports, the highest number of faulty or problematic booths were identified in these four districts. Voting in these booths will take place amid tight security.
Further, voting in Thathoorpoyil in Mavoor panchayat in Kozhikode and Thilankeri in Kannur was cancelled due to the sudden demise of the candidates who were standing for elections.
Meanwhile, the State Election Commission has asked the voters to not use any pen or sharp object for pressing the button in the Electronic Voting Machine (EVMs). The state election commission instructed poll officials deployed in each booth to ensure that voters did not use pens or other objects to press the button as it could result in technical snags. The directive was issued after it was found that voters were using pens to press the EVM buttons during the first and second phase of voting. They were doing this to avoid contact with the EVM machine for fear of contracting COVID-19.