Assembly Elections 2018: MP registers 74.61% voter turnout, Mizoram 75%

File photo: An Electronic Voting Machine (EVM). Photograph:( Others )

PTI New Delhi, Delhi, India Nov 28, 2018, 06.06 PM (IST)

Altogether 74.61 per cent voters exercised their franchise in the Madhya Pradesh Assembly elections Wednesday, while that in the northeastern state Mizoram was recorded as 75 per cent.

The turnout till 3 pm was recorded as 50 per cent in MP while 58 per cent in Mizoram.

In the 2013 Assembly election, 72.69 per cent turnout was recorded, an election official said.

The polling Wednesday was marred by complaints of faulty Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs) and Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVVPAT) machines. Poll officials said 1,145 EVMs and 1,545 VVPATs were replaced after complaints of technical snags.

Polling was held between 8 am and 5 pm in 227 seats, while in three assembly segments - Lanji, Paraswada and Baihar - in the Naxal-affected Balaghat district, the voting time was between 7 am to 3 pm, state Chief Electoral Officer V L Kantha Rao said.

About 2.5 per cent (polling) machines were replaced, Rao said, adding this percentage was around two per cent in other states where elections were held recently.

Three employees died due to "health reasons" while performing poll duty in Dhar, Indore and Guna districts, he said.

At Gadhpura village in Bhind district, a person was injured in violence but it was not poll-related, he said. The incident happened "far from the booth" and was related to enmity between two groups, he added.

Asked about reports that some EVMs were found in a hotel, Rao said, "We have got the information that a sector officer in Shujalpur was staying in a hotel along with ballot machines. On getting information, the officers reached the hotel and seized the machine. The officer concerned was removed (from poll duty) and the polling team was sent along with a new sector officer."

The battle of ballots in Madhya Pradesh is just months ahead of the Lok Sabha polls slated in the first half of 2019.

Altogether 2,899 candidates were in the fray. The state has 5.04 crore, eligible voters.

Also, 3,00,782 government employees, including 45,904 women, were on poll duty and 65,341 polling stations were set up.

75 per cent polling in Mizoram

Around 75 per cent votes were cast in the Mizoram assembly polls on Wednesday but the figure is expected to rise as there were long queues of voters outside polling booths to exercise their franchise, Chief Electoral Officer Ashish Kundra said.

Polling was held in all the 40 assembly seats.

Kundra told reporters that the highest turnout of 81 per cent was reported at Serchhip seat, where Chief Minister Lal Thanhawla is one of the contestants.

At Kanhmun village in Mamit district bordering Tripura where Bru refugees lodged in Tripura camps cast their votes, 52 per cent of the 118987 electorates exercised their franchise, he said.

"This is satisfactory considering the circumstances," he said.

The polling in Kanhmun ended at 3 pm, while for the rest of the state the time was 4 pm.

Story highlights

The battle of ballots in Madhya Pradesh is just months ahead of the Lok Sabha polls slated in the first half of 2019.