Number of candidates has substantially lessened this assembly elections comparing to 2008 despite steady rise of voters in Tripura. Even women candidates have not even touched the half mark that was in previous elections.

According to state’s chief electoral officer Ashutosh Jindal, 235 candidates are in the fray after expiry of withdrawal, which were 282 in 2008. “Women candidates were 31 in last election, but this time only 14 are contesting”, he said on Friday in a meet the press programme.

Mr. Jindal spoke on various measures and gave certain statistics on ensuing assembly elections, first after delimitation of constituencies. He said number of polling stations have been raised to 3041 from 2391 to facilitate smooth conduct of elections on February 14.

The CEO stated 53,580 young voters would exercise their franchise first time in 60 assembly constituencies. He informed Satirai Reang (age 26) of a regional party, IPFT, is the youngest candidate contesting from Korbuk segment in south Tripura.

Replying to volley of questions Mr. Ashutosh Jindal said elaborate and full proof measures taken to conduct free and peaceful elections. He informed additional paramilitary troops have reached and deployed in security related duties.

“We have all necessary measures in place. I want to say we are watching everyone, so there should not be any attempt to disturb or subvert election”, he warned.

He stated the election commission has so far received 20 complaints from various parties on alleged violation of code of conduct and they are being disposed off. He said even the candidates were advised not to flout code of conduct, else they would be disqualified.

The CEO added best of efforts were taken to have error free electoral rolls. 23.55 lakh voters including 11,56,476 women are eligible to vote.