Over 82 percent voter turnout recorded in third phase Assam polls
Polling percentage highest among all three phases
GUWAHATI, April 6: Voting in the third and final phase of the Assam Assembly elections came to an end across 40 constituencies on Tuesday evening, with an estimated polling percentage of 82.28 per cent recorded till 7pm.
The voter turnout is the best among the three phases of polls as the first and second phases recorded a final percentage of 79.97 percent (47 constituencies) and 80.96 percent (39 constituencies) respectively.
The final polling percentage of the third phase polls is poised to go well beyond the estimated percentage (82.28 percent), with some constituencies in western Assam districts recording voter turnouts close to 90 percent till evening.
Kamrup Metro, on the other hand, recorded a relatively lower voter turnout of 74 percent till 5pm even as the percentage will eventually rise.
Jalukbari, the constituency where BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma is contesting for the sixth time, saw a turnout of 78 percent till 5pm while Gauhati West also saw an impressive poling percentage of 79 percent till 5pm.
Barring isolated incidents of disorder, including one at Golakganj constituency in Dhubri district where security forces had to open a round of blank fire as a precautionary measure following a reported scuffle between two groups at a polling station, the voting process in the third phase by and large remained peaceful.
Long queues in most polling booths were witnessed more than an hour before the stipulated voting time at 7am.
Sources said that in some polling stations, voters reached the polling booths between 4.30am and 5am and the weather remained bright and sunny throughout.
From 12.83 percent at 9am, 33.18 percent at 11am to 53.23 percent at 1pm and 68.31 percent at 3pm, the turnout registered a steady increase as the day progressed.
Election department sources said that barring a miniscule number of electronic voting machines that had to be replaced in some polling booths, the polling process was smooth and held under strict COVID protocols.
Hand sanitisers, plastic gloves and face masks were provided to the voters while they were in the queue. “The polling stations were sanitised ahead of voting day and all arrangements of bio-medical waste were in place,” said an official source.
However, some discrepancies in regard to adherence of the physical distancing protocols were witnessed in a few polling stations of Gauhati East constituency.
Approximately 40,000 polling personnel have been deployed in the third phase.
Meanwhile, the third phase also saw key candidates head to the polling booths early. BJP ministers Himanta Biswa Sarma, Chandra Mohan Patowary, Siddhartha Bhattacharya and Phani Bhushan Choudhury voted at their respective polling centres in the first half of the day.
Among leaders from Bodoland People’s Front (BPF), party chief Hagrama Mohilary, BPF ministers and candidates, Chandan Brahma (Sidli) and Pramila Rani Brahma (Kokrajhar East), cast their votes in their respective constituencies as well.
A total of 79,19,641 general electors and 26,460 service voters were registered to exercise their franchise in the third phase of Assam Assembly polls and decide the fate of 337 candidates, including 25 female candidates.
Polling took place in a total of 11,401 polling stations, of which 149 were model polling stations.
In phase three, 99,471 electors were above 80 years of age; 54,148 fell under the PwD (persons with disabilities) category while 4,18,537 were to vote for the first time.
The constituency having the highest number of electors in phase three was Dispur LAC with 607 polling stations and having 4,11,636 electors while that having the lowest number of electors was Dharmapur LAC with 197 polling stations and having 1,41,592 electors.