Voter turnout of 33.89 per cent was recorded till 1pm on Saturday in the urban body polls in Chhattisgarh, officials said. Voting began at 8am amid tight security in 151 civic bodies, comprising 10 municipal corporations, 38 municipal councils and 103 nagar panchayats, apart from a bypoll in three wards of two civic bodies, an official said. "Voting percentage till 1pm is 33.89. The polling will conclude at 5 pm. It has been peaceful so far," he added.
Over 10,000 candidates are in the fray where the main fight is between the ruling Congress and the BJP, though a large number of independent and rebel candidates in the fray could spoil chances of the national parties.
Their fate will be decided by 40,05,353 voters, comprising 20,04,607 men, 20,00,303 women and 443 from the third gender. A total of 5,427 booths have set up for the polling which is being conducted through ballots. Results will be declared on December 24.
The state is witnessing polls to posts of mayors of municipal corporations and chairpersons of other civic bodies in an indirect manner for the first time after it was carved out from Madhya Pradesh in 2000.
The state government had, last month, issued a gazette notification of Chhattisgarh Municipal Corporation (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 paving the way for indirect elections of mayors and chief of other civic bodies.
As per the new rules, general public will directly elect corporators of wards who will then elect mayor and chairpersons from among them.