Counting of votes for UP panchayat polls underway
May 02, 2021  10:30
Counting of votes for the panchayat polls in Uttar Pradesh began on Sunday morning, an official said. "The counting of votes will continue till all the ballots are counted. The entire process may take two days," a senior SEC official told PTI. 

 The State Election Commission (SEC) had said the candidates and their agents will be allowed to enter the counting centres only if they have tested negative for COVID-19 in the 48 hours prior to the commencement of the counting process or taken both doses of the vaccine. The Supreme Court on Saturday had refused to stay the counting process. 

In a special urgent hearing on a holiday (Saturday), a bench of Justice A M Khanwilkar and Justice Hrishikesh Roy passed the order after taking note of several notifications and assurances of the SEC that the COVID-19 protocols will be followed at all the 829 counting centres. 

 The court directed that there will be a strict curfew in the entire state till Tuesday morning and no victory rallies will be permitted. It also asked the SEC to fix the responsibility for observance of COVID-19 protocols at the counting centres on gazetted officers.
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