East states election 2019 voting LIVE updates: EVM failure rate under 1 percent, says Odisha CEC; no untoward incidents in state
East states Lok Sabha election voting LIVE updates: A BJP delegation led by Jay Prakash Majumdar Vice-President and Sishir Bajoria, Member, Election Committee shall meet the West Bengal CEO at 2:30 pm today. The Meeting is to lodge a complaint against massive rigging and discrepancies in voting at the Alipurduar and Coochbehar Lok Sabha constituencies.
Polling will be held in Odisha and West Bengal from 7 am to 6 pm
In North East, voting will take place between 7 am and 5 pm in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Sikkim and Tripura
Cooch Behar and Alipurduar are two constituencies in West Bengal going to polls today
East states Lok Sabha election voting LATEST updates: A BJP delegation led by Jay Prakash Majumdar Vice-President and Sishir Bajoria, Member, Election Committee shall meet the West Bengal CEO at 2:30 pm today. The Meeting is to lodge a complaint against massive rigging and discrepancies in voting at the Alipurduar and Coochbehar Lok Sabha constituencies.
A police complaint was filed against BJP's Shillong candidate Sanbor Shullai for misbehaving with a polling agent.
The vehicle of Tapan Maity, Ghatal Loksabha Convenor, was vandalised by alleged TMC workers at West Bengal's Maisara in Panskura Lok Sabha Constituency.
The BJP has alleged that at the Maruganj 8/105 booth of Coochbehar constituency, the EVM has a nail polish mark on the BJP button. This ploy, they claim. is being used by TMC to identify anyone voting for the BJP.
Some BJP workers have also alleged an attack by TMC men. Three BJP workers have been critically wounded while four others have also sustained injuries in the clash.
Many pooling booths in Berhampur constituency in the Ganjam district of Odisha greeted voters with beverages to help them beat the heat during voting. One of the reasons for the distribution of complimentary drinks is to attract voters in regions where low voting percentage has been recorded in the past.
At one of the polling station in Outer Manipur constituency, people are shying away from casting their votes in this polling station as they hardly have seen any of the candidates. The candidates haven't visited their area for political campaigning or any other electioneering activities.
The voting percentage in Nagaland till 11 am was reported to be 41 percent, while 35.03 percent was reported from Manipur. Meghalaya voter turnout till now is reported to be 27 percent, while Arunachal Pradesh witnessed 27.48 percent voting. Meanwhile, 41 percent of voting till 11 am has been reported from Sikkim.
BJP candidate Nisith Pramanik claimed that in the Sitai 6/257 and 258 polling booths of Coochbehar Lok Sabha constituency widespread rigging is being witnessed. He also alleged that the police looked helpless in front of TMC men armed with rods and machetes.
In Manipur, an EVM machine failure was reported at 32/29 Heirok Khunku Polling Station. Similar incidents were also reported at 33/6 Shikhong and 33/2 Ningel polling stations in the same assembly segment. Meanwhile, in West Bengal the EVM stopped working at Anjuman School 7/236 Anjuman School. Voting also stopped at Acharya Sir Prafulla Chandra Ray Higher Secondary School in Agartala, part of West Tripura Lok Sabha constituency, due to EVM malfunctioning.
Chief Minister of Sikkim Pawan Chamling cast his vote at Namchi, whereas Meghalaya chief minister Conrad Sangma voted at the Walbagre polling station which is a part of the Tura Parliamentary Seat. Apart from them, BJP Jorhat BJP candidate Tapan Gogoi also cast his vote at the Sonari polling booth in Assam.
18.10 percent vote percentage was recorded in West Bengal Bengal till 9 am. From Sikkim 34 percent voter turnout was reported till 9 am, while 17 percent was reported from Mizoram. Whereas, in Nagaland, 21 percent turnout was reported till 9 am, News18 reported. Meanwhile, in Assam's Charaideo district voting percentage was 9.5 percent and Sonari and Mahmora constituencies recorded 8 percent and 11 percent turnout respectively. However, the overall voter turnout from Assam till 9 am is 10.2 percent.
According to reports, workers of the Trinamool Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party clashed in West Bengal's Cooch Behar. The incident comes after reports of a TMC Gram Panchayat chief being attacked, along with two others, on Wednesday night allegedly by BJP workers at Mathabhanga in Cooch Behar.
In West Bengal's Cooch Behar constituency, senior citizens came out to vote in the ongoing Lok Sabha election with much enthusiasm. Meanwhile, voters queued up in Manipur's Imphal to cast their vote. Polling is being held in the Outer Manipur Lok Sabha constituency today, which is one of the two parliamentary seats in the state.
In Odisha, sixty lakh voters will exercise their franchise in the first phase of polls for four Lok Sabha and 28 assembly seats on Thursday. The first phase of polls will decide the fate of 217 candidates. There are 26 hopefuls in fray for the Lok Sabha seats and 191 for the Assembly seats.
In an appeal to the nation, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted: "Lok Sabha Election 2019 commence today. I call upon all those whose constituencies are voting in the first phase today to turn out in record numbers and exercise their franchise. I specially urge young and first-time voters to vote in large numbers."
In Assam's Dibrugarh, voters started arrived early at polling booths no. 156 and 158 ahead of the voting for the first phase Lok Sabha elections 2019. Assam will see five of its 14 parliamentary seats going to the polls with Congress MP and son of former chief minister Tarun Gogoi, Gaurav Gogoi contesting from Kaliabor.
Of the two seats in Arunachal Pradesh, Union Minister Kiren Rijiju is seeking re-election from the Arunachal West Lok Sabha constituency. The National People’s Party (NPP) has put Khyoda Apik as its candidate opposite Rijiju. The Union Minister also has to contend with Congress candidate Nabam Tuki and Janata Dal (Secular) candidate Jarjum Ete. Ete, 56, is the first woman candidate fielded by any party for a Lok Sabha seat in Arunachal Pradesh.
In the first phase of Lok Sabha election 2019, polling will be held in 91 out of 543 Lok Sabha constituencies spread over 20 states and Union Territories on Thursday. Out of these, 20 seats fall in the east region comprising of Odisha, West Bengal and the north-eastern states.
As per the directions of the Election Commission of India (ECI), drinking water and shaded areas to protect voters from the summer heat will be arranged, and `Sakhi' polling booths (where all officials will be women) will be adequately set up in all constituencies.
In east India, polling will be held in Odisha and West Bengal on Thursday from 7 am to 6 pm, except for the areas hit by Left-Wing-Extremism, where the voting will take place from 7 am to 4 pm. In the North East, voting will take place between 7 am and 5 pm in Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Sikkim and Tripura. While, outer Manipur, Nagaland and Meghalaya will go to polls between 7 am and 4 pm.
Cooch Behar and Alipurduar will be the two constituencies in West Bengal to go to the polls on Thursday.
The ruling Trinamool Congress in West Bengal and the BJP are the main contenders in the two north Bengal seats, while the CPM-led Left Front and the Congress will fight to make their presence felt. From the Left Front, All India Forward Bloc will contest from Cooch Behar and Revolutionary Socialist Party will fight in Alipurduar.
Cooch Behar district has the distinction of housing 51 enclaves which became part of India in 2015 after the exchange with Bangladesh. The enclaves have 15,000 dwellers. With the seat located on the Indo-Bangla border, infiltration, livelihood for the enclave dwellers and employment for the youth are the main poll issues.
Alipurduar is reserved constituency for scheduled tribes as it has a large population of adivasis who migrated to the region during the British era to work in tea gardens. There is also a sizeable chunk of Nepalis and Rajbangshi tribals. The poor condition of tea garden workers, specially since the closure of several tea gardens since the 1990s, will play a major role in this election.
The two constituencies witnessed high-pitched campaign which was mainly polarised between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Trinamool Congress supremo and West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee.
In Alipurduar, the TMC has nominated Dasarath Tirkey against John Barla of BJP. The Congress and the RSP candidates are Mohanlal Basumata and Mili Oraon respectively.
The TMC has fielded Paresh Adhikari against the BJP's Nisith Pramanik in Cooch Behar, where Piya Roy Chowdhury of the Congress and Gobinda Roy of Forward Bloc are also in the fray. A total of 18,09,598 electorate will decide the fate of 11 contestants in Cooch Behar, while 16,42,285 voters will choose from seven in Alipurduar.
The Election Commission has made an elaborate security arrangement with the deployment of 83 companies of the central force, besides an adequate number of state forces. Besides general election observers and expenditure observers, the poll panel for the first time deployed a special police observer. In another first, VVPAT will be used in all polling booths along with the EVMs.
In Odisha, voting will be held in four Lok Sabha and 28 Assembly seats on Thursday. Elaborate security arrangements have been made to ensure smooth polling and foil any attempt to disrupt the process in Maoist-affected areas. Several areas in Kalahandi, Nabarangpur, Berhampur and Koraput Lok Sabha constituencies and 28 Assembly segments falling under them are Naxal-hit.
While polling parties have already been dispatched to their respective stations, security has been tightened mainly in Malkangiri and Koraput districts to thwart any bid by Maoists to derail the poll process. At least two helicopters are being used to send polling officials to inaccessible and highly-sensitive polling stations in Malkangiri, Kumar said.
An extra vigil is being maintained and an alert sounded in the wake of the killing of five people, including an MLA, in Dantewada area of neighbouring Chhattisgarh and recovery of two landmines in Gajapati district, a police official told PTI.
Around 47,805 polling personnel are being deployed to conduct the first phase of the polls, Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Surendra Kumar said. Special arrangements have been made in 2,375 critical and sensitive polling booths, while satellite phones provided in 810 booths, where there are no mobile or internet facilities.
Paramilitary forces, police, flying squads, static surveillance teams, poll observers, videography teams and excise sleuths will be deployed in the constituencies.
The first phase of polls will decide the fate of a total of 217 candidates. There are 26 hopefuls in the fray, including two women, in four Lok Sabha constituencies, and 191 candidates, 16 of them women, in 28 Assembly seats.
With inputs from agencies
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