Arunachal: Nearly 66 per cent turnout in Assembly elections

42 injured in sporadic violence; voter turnout for the two Lok Sabha seats in the northeastern state was slightly higher at 67.13 per cent.

Published - April 22, 2024 11:21 am IST - Itanagar

Kurung Kumey [Arunachal Pradesh], Apr 19 (ANI): An elderly woman being assisted as she arrives to cast her vote during the first phase of voting for the Lok Sabha election 2024, in Kurung Kumey on April 19, 2024.

Kurung Kumey [Arunachal Pradesh], Apr 19 (ANI): An elderly woman being assisted as she arrives to cast her vote during the first phase of voting for the Lok Sabha election 2024, in Kurung Kumey on April 19, 2024. | Photo Credit: ANI

An estimated 65.79 per cent of 8.92 lakh electors on Friday, April 19, 2024, exercised their franchise in Arunachal Pradesh where polling for 50 assembly seats was held on Friday, amid reports of sporadic violence and bids to snatch EVMs from a few districts, leaving 42 people injured, an official said.

The voter turnout for the two Lok Sabha seats in the northeastern state was slightly higher at 67.13 per cent.

The difference between turnouts of Lok Sabha and assembly polls exists as BJP candidates in 10 assembly seats were elected unopposed and thus elections were not held in these segments.

Though the polling ended at 5 pm, long queues of voters were seen at several polling booths at that time and they will be allowed to cast their votes as per the EC guidelines, Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Pawan Kumar Sain said.

In the 2019 Lok Sabha and assembly polls, which were held simultaneously, the state witnessed a record 83.33 per cent voting.

Supporters of two candidates clashed near a polling station in Bameng constituency in East Kameng district, which forced the election authorities to suspend voting, the CEO said.

Some miscreants tried to snatch EVMs in three polling stations in the Nacho constituency in Upper Subansiri and in one in Kurung Kumey district, where polling was also suspended.

“Re-polling in these polling stations is likely to be held,” Sain said.

Altogether, 42 people were injured in poll-related violence, he said, adding that action would be taken against those found to be involved in violence.

The voter turnout was moderate in the morning hours due to inclement weather but it gained momentum in the second half, the poll official said.

“Presiding officers in various polling booths where voting was going on beyond the stipulated time, had issued slips to voters around 4.45 PM so that they can continue polling as per Election Commission norms,” he said.

Barring reports of sporadic violence in the three districts, the "polling was peaceful in the rest of the state", the CEO said.

Sain said voting got delayed in several polling stations as the electronic voting machines (EVMs) developed technical snags.

"We replaced 8 control units (CUs) and 34 VVPATs in polling stations where voting for parliamentary seats was conducted, besides 16 CUs and 33 VVPATS were replaced in booths where voting was held for assembly polls," the CEO said.

Altogether 8,92,694 voters would decide the electoral fate of 133 candidates in the assembly elections and 14 Lok Sabha poll contestants.

The ruling BJP has already won ten seats unopposed in the 60-member assembly.

In the Arunachal West parliamentary seat, eight candidates, including Union Minister Kiren Rijiju and state Congress president Nabam Tuki, are in the fray.

Sitting BJP MP Tapir Gao and state Congress vice president Bosiram Siram are among the six candidates who are contesting from the Arunachal East.

Counting of votes for assembly elections will be held on June 2, while that of Lok Sabha polls is scheduled on June 4.

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