Assam elections 2021 third phase updates | 82.28% voter turnout till 7 pm

People stand in long queues to cast their votes for the third and last phase of Assam Assembly election in Guwahati.   | Photo Credit: Ritu Raj Konwar

Polling for 40 seats in the final phase of the assembly elections in Assam began at 7 a.m. on Tuesday to decide the fate of 337 candidates, including senior minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, his five cabinet colleagues and state BJP president Ranjeet Kumar Dass.

A direct contest between nominees of the BJP-led NDA and Congress-headed Grand Alliance is on the cards in 20 constituencies while there is a triangular fight, including friendly contests, in the remaining seats with the Assam Jatiya Parishad (AJP) being considered as the third force.

The newly floated AJP is contesting in 22 seats while there are 126 independents in the fray in the final phase of the election in which the BJP-led coalition is seeking to return to power for the second term in a row.

Here are the live updates:

7.15 p.m.

The polling percentage at 7 p.m. is 82.28%, and is expected to increase.

- Rahul Karmakar

5.40 pm

Assam polling percentage at 5 pm is 78.94%. - Rahul Karmakar

4.45 pm

Assam Dy Speaker quizzed, 5 policemen suspended for firing on crowd during 2nd phase voting

Assam Assembly Deputy Speaker Aminul Haque Laskar has been quizzed twice and five police personnel attached to him have been suspended after they opened fire on public during second phase of polling, officials said Tuesday.

At least three persons were injured in the firing by the body guards of Laskar on April 1 after clashes broke out between supporters of BJP and AIUDF inside the polling station at 463 Madhya Dhanehori LP School of Sonai constituency.

Police sources said Laskar was interrogated twice for several hours during the last 48 hours and his statements have been recorded in front of a magistrate.

Sitting MLA Laskar is having a direct fight with Karim Uddin Barbhuiya of the AIUDF on Sonai seat.

When contacted, Cachar Superintendent of Police Bhanwar Lal Meena told PTI that all the nine police personnel attached to the deputy speaker have been removed from the duty with immediate effect in view of the ongoing probe.

"Out of them, five police personnel have been suspended in connection with the firing. Among them, three are the body guards of Laskar and two are the security personnel of the escort vehicle," Mr. Meena said. - PTI

3.50 pm

Assam Assembly election can decide future of several players

Like any other Assembly election, voters in Assam, where the final phase of polling ends on April 6, will be choosing a government by May 2.

However, for the State, the election is likely to have implications beyond who wins and who loses. It could well settle some of the questions/issues that have come to define recent politics in the State.

The BJP may be seeking a second term for its first government in the northeastern State but the party went to the polls without announcing the incumbent Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal as its face for a second term. It’s an acknowledgement of the importance of Himanta Biswa Sarma or HBS — the Minister who holds a number of portfolios, including Finance and Health, and is the face of the party in the northeast though he is number two in Assam. It is also a sign of a possible post-poll scenario if the BJP were to win. - Sandeep Phukan

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3.45 pm

Assam 3rd phase poll percentage is 68.31% at 3 pm. - Rahul Karmakar

3.30 pm

First-time voters in Assam thrilled to be part of democracy

First-time voters in Assam displayed their enthusiasm by queuing up in large numbers before polling stations, much before the third phase of the assembly polls began on Tuesday, with the momentum continuing.

The young voters turned up in large numbers in most of the 40 constituencies spread across 12 districts.

In the third and last phase of state polls, there are 4,18,537 electors who are eligible to exercise their franchise for the first time.

Reposing their faith in democracy, the young voters said, they felt thrilled to be part of the electoral process. - PTI

2.30 pm

Polling underway peacefully in Assam, booths showcase different themes

Polling was underway peacefully amid tight security at the 40 assembly constituencies in Assam where voters were exercising their franchise in the final phase on Tuesday, officials said.

Voters wearing masks were seen queuing up outside polling booths, maintaining distance by standing in marked circles across the 12 districts in lower Assam where voting was underway.

The voters who did not have masks were provided with one, besides a disposable plastic glove before they were allowed to enter the polling booths.

No untoward incident has been reported so far, police said. - PTI

2 pm

53.23 % voter turnout recorded till 1 pm in 40 assembly seats where polling is underway for last phase, say officials. - PTI

12 pm

Assam has recorded a voter turnout of 33.18% till 11 a.m.

11 am

Priyanka slams 'irresponsible' EC, BJP's negative politics

With the final phase of the Assembly elections in Assam taking place, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra said that at a time when there is an "irresponsible" Election Commission and negative politics is being played by the ruling BJP, the people of Assam will choose the path of guarantee of development and progress.

In a Facebook post in Hindi, Priyanka Gandhi said, "Today is the last phase of elections in Assam. I appeal to all my sisters and brothers to vote in large numbers to strengthen the democratic process."

"At a time when there is an irresponsible Election Commission (EC) and negative politics is being played by the ruling party, the people of Assam will choose the path of guarantee of development and progress," the Congress general secretary said. The Congress-led Opposition has been raising questions over the EC's neutrality and functioning in the Assam polls. - PTI

10 am

Assam has recorded 12.83% voter turnout till 9 a.m.

 

PM Modi, Rahul Gandhi urge people to vote in large numbers

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Congress leader Rahul Gandhi urged people to vote in large numbers in the Assembly elections in Assam.

"Elections are taking place in Assam, Kerala, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu and West Bengal. I request the people in these places to vote in record numbers, particularly the young voters," the Prime Minister tweeted.

"Do cast your votes today - India is counting on you," Mr. Gandhi tweeted.

In a Facebook post, ongress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra urged people in Assam to vote in large numbers and strengthen the democratic process.

 

Stakes higher for Mahajot in final phase in Assam

When Mohammed Sanaullah, a retired soldier, casts his vote at the Koloikash Primary School under Chaygaon Assembly constituency on Tuesday, his mind will perhaps be on a faraway “hellhole” he had spent a week in, almost two years ago.

The Goalpara Central jail, one of six in Assam also serving as detention centres for “foreigners”, is about 100 km from his village west of Guwahati. Mr. Sanaullah was lodged in this detention centre after a Foreigners’ Tribunal (FT) declared him a non-citizen.

But he is more worried about the one to come — an exclusive detention centre at Matia about 25 km east of the Goalpara jail and under Goalpara East Assembly constituency. This centre is expected to house 3,000 people who don’t get reprieve from the FTs after exclusion from the National Register of Citizens (NRC).

“This election has perhaps been the most polarised, stoking the sentiments as well as fears of the minorities. We will be voting for dignity, to live without the tag of Bangladeshi or Miya or illegal immigrant,” Mr. Sanaullah told The Hindu on the eve of polling across 40 of Assam’s 126 Assembly seats.

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7 am

Polling begins for 40 sets in final phase of Assam elections

Polling for 40 seats in the final phase of the assembly elections in Assam began at 7 a.m. on Tuesday to decide the fate of 337 candidates, including senior minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, his five cabinet colleagues and state BJP president Ranjeet Kumar Dass.

People wearing masks and maintaining social distance were seen queuing outside polling stations even before the voting began in the 40 constituencies spread over 12 districts.

In several polling stations, the first voter and senior citizens were greeted with a 'gamosa' (traditional towel) and, in some cases, with saplings.

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Printable version | May 13, 2021 10:44:46 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/assam-assembly/assam-elections-2021-third-phase-voting-live-updates/article34246270.ece

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