Votes for the general Assembly elections of Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Goa and Manipur will be counted on Saturday.
The exit polls released on Thursday projected a win for BJP in the 40-seat Goa Assembly. The exit polls put Congress in the second lead and predicted that the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) might not repeat its Delhi success in Goa.
Three exit polls Axis My India, C-Voter and MRC have given the BJP an edge over its competitors. The party is likely to win 15 to 22 seats, followed by Congress. MRC predicts 15 seats for BJP, 10 for Congress and AAP seven. Meanwhile, C-voter predicts that BJP may retain Goa with 18 seats and Congress may gain six seats. AAP which is making its debut in Goa might just end up only two seats. C-Voter exit poll predicts that BJP would be the single largest party in Goa.
Based on the exit polls, BJP may form the new government but may not hit the majority mark of 21 seats. "Goa could be headed for a hung Assembly in which smaller parties could come into the picture. Congress winning the maximum 18 seats may open intense efforts and bargaining. As of now it is clear that AAP’s attempts to extend its 2014 Delhi experiment may have failed in Goa," political commentator Ajay Jha says. The smaller parties and the Independents are likely to be the kingmakers.
In last-minute instructions on preparations for the counting day on Saturday, the Election Commission on Thursday instructed the electoral officers to set up additional close-circuit TV cameras to monitor carrying of EVMs from strongrooms to the counting hall.
"On the day of counting, additional CCTV camera may be installed at such locations from where the carrying of EVMs from strong rooms to the counting hall can be recorded for effective monitoring," the EC said in the letter.
The EC further said: "For counting day, CCTV cameras must be strategically placed so that all movements of personnel carrying control units is covered and displayed on TV, placed at the Returning Officer's table and at some place where candidates, counting agents can also view the movement of CUs from strong room to the counting hall."
It further said that in case the counting hall is located at a distance or in a separate building away from the strong room, barricading from the strong room door up to the counting hall door should be done in such a way that "EVMs of each constituency should not be criss-crossing each other".
According to Goa Chief Electoral Officer Kunal, the overall polling percentage on 4 February was 81. Out of the 11.10 lakh registered voters, 8,98,507 exercised their franchise. The constituencies in the mining and tourism belts saw more than the average polling, as per the EC estimates.
Though as many as 250 candidates, including many Independents, are in the fray for the 40 seats, the fight is mainly between ruling BJP, Congress, AAP and MGP-led alliance.
With inputs from agencies
Published Date: Mar 14, 2017 07:02 pm | Updated Date: Mar 14, 2017 07:02 pm