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Omicron threat: Madhya Pradesh Home Ministry seeks postponement of panchayat polls, EC to review situation

This development comes after the Allahabad High Court on Thursday urged the central government to stop political rallies from being held in election-bound states.
 

Omicron threat: Madhya Pradesh Home Ministry seeks postponement of panchayat polls, EC to review situation-dnm
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Bhopal, First Published Dec 24, 2021, 1:48 PM IST
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Bhopal: In view of a possible third wave amid a surge in cases of Omicron variant of coronavirus in the country, Madhya Pradesh Home Ministry has sought postponement of state panchayat elections. Madhya Pradesh is set to hold panchayat elections in three phases on January 6, January 28, and February 16, 2022. The nomination process for the first phase has begun.

This development comes after the Allahabad High Court on Thursday urged the central government to stop political rallies from being held in election-bound states. A Bench of Justice Shekhar Kumar Yadav said the number of patients infected with Omicron variant are increasing and there is a possibility of a third wave.

Reacting to this CEC Sushil Chandra today said that they will visit Uttar Pradesh next week and take a call after reviewing the situation in the poll-bound state. “Next week we’ll go to UP and review the situation there and then take an appropriate decision,” he said.

The much-awaited Uttar Pradesh assembly election is to be held early next year, all political parties are on a campaign spree to woo voters. Political parties are mobilising hundreds and thousands of people holding election rallies where it is difficult to maintain Covid protocols.

Also read: Popular South Delhi restaurant Diablo sealed for violating COVID norms, FIR registered

If this is not stopped in time, the consequences could be direr than the second wave of the pandemic, the HC observed.

The court requested the Election Commission of India (ECI) to immediately stop such rallies and gatherings and also order political parties to campaign through TV channels and newspapers.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi also took a review meeting on Thursday to check preparedness against a possible outbreak of another Covid-19 wave. 

Meanwhile, MP government on Thursday re-imposed a night curfew from 11 pm to 5 am as a precautionary measure to stop the spread and a third wave. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Thursday, while addressing the public said that the state had reported 30 fresh Covid cases after a long gap and so far hasn't reported any cases of the new 'Omicron' variant yet.

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