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High voter turnout in Assam, West Bengal Assembly polls

82.02 pc voter turnout reported from Assam, 79.51 pc from West Bengal till 5 pm

Policy Pulse
Publish Date: Apr 11 2016 11:22AM | Updated Date: Apr 12 2016 11:19AM

High voter turnout in Assam, West Bengal Assembly polls


High voter turnout was reported in assembly elections in Assam and West Bengal where an estimated 82.02 per cent and 79.51 percent of the voters cast their ballots on Monday till around 5 in the middle of few clashes and police firing that resulted in the death of an elderly voter.


In Assam, where balloting was held in 61 constituencies in  second and last phase, a voter died in a scuffle between CRPF personnel and the locals at a polling station in Barpeta district, officials said. 


Three others, including a CRPF person and a constable were also injured in the incident.


Security men fired in the air to suppress a protest in Kamrup district after a CRPF constable allegedly "misbehaved" with an woman.


The entire team of CRPF deployed in the polling station was replaced after the incident.


Long queues outside polling stations were seen since early morning .


Prominent among those whose fate will be decided in this phase include cabinet ministers Chandan Sarkar, Rakibul Hussain and Nazrul Islam of Congress, BJP national spokesman Sidhartha Bhattacharya and AGP leader and former chief minister Prafulla Kumar Mahanta. 


Also in the fray wass former Congress minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who joined BJP last year.


There were 525 candidates in the fray.


Congress had fielded 57 candidates, BJP 35, its allies AGP 19 and BPF 10, AIDUF 47, CPI-M nine and CPI five.


65 of the state's 126 seats had gone to polls on April 4.


In West Bengal, 79. 51 percent voters cast their ballots till around 5pm in 31 seats where voting was held in the second part of the first phase of poll.


Opposition parties accused the ruling Trinamool Congress of resorting to widespread violence during the day, when the second part of the first phase of the assembly election took place covering 13 constituencies in West Midnapore and nine each in Bankura and Burdwan districts.


According to Election Commission officials, between 75 and close to 85 percent polling was seen in the three districts till 5 p.m. However, till 8 p.m., the officials could not provide the final overall percentage.


"In West Midnapore, the percentage was 84.71, Bankura recorded 78.87, and Burdwan 75.12," the officials said.


A polling official, Parimal Barui, deputed to a booth in Pandabeshwar of Burdwan district, fell ill on Sunday night and died on Monday, the EC said.


An electorate of nearly 70 lakh (69,79,788), including 33,68,311 females and 50 from the third gender, were eligible to choose their representatives from 163 candidates -- 21 of them women -- across 8,465 polling stations including two auxiliary stations.


The Trinamool, the Left Front-Congress combine and the BJP are locking horns in all the seats.


In the 2011 assembly polls, the Trinamool Congress had bagged 17 and its then ally Congress got three seats. The Left Front, then in power, won the remaining 11.


Voters in 18 constituencies -- six in West Midnapore, nine in Purulia and three in Bankura -- exercised their franchise on the first polling day on April 4.


Polling for the remaining phases will be held on April 17, 21, 25, 30 and May 5.