New Delhi, Apr 9: It was another spectacle of very high turnout of voters today in six Lok Sabha constituencies spread across four north-eastern states where polling was by and large peaceful.
The conduct of polling was smooth barring a few incidents due to which polling could not take place in seven places in Arunachal Pradesh and one in Nagaland.
In Outer Manipur Lok Sabha constituency, the turnout was 70 per cent. With voters standing in long queues even after polling hours, the Election Commission here said the percentage could go up to 78 per cent.
In the 2009 Lok Sabha polls, the constituency had witnessed 77.43 per cent polling.
In the two constituencies of Meghalaya, the poll percentage till 5 PM when the polling ended was 64 per cent.
EC said the figure could go upto 66 per cent.
In 2009 polls, the poll percentage recorded in Meghalaya was 64.42 per cent.
Voting in Nagaland’s lone parliamentary constituency was reported as “brisk and peaceful” by the Election Commission with 82.5 per cent of the electorate casting their votes. The Commission expects a higher percentage as reports from some areas were still awaited.
In 2009 Lok Sabha polls, the poll percentage was a massive 90.22 per cent.
The first phase of Lok Sabha poll in five constituencies in Assam and one in Tripura on April had also recorded 72 and 84 percent turnout.
Till the 2009 general elections, the election photo I card coverage in Nagaland was ‘zero’. But in these Lok Sabha polls, the photo I card coverage has increased to an impressive 95.96 per cent. Most of the voters in Nagaland have the latest plastic I cards which are long lasting, EC officials said here.
In Arunachal Pradesh’s two constituencies, voters turned out in large numbers despite some regions experiencing rains and snowfall in Tawang.
The poll percentage till 5 PM was recorded at 71 per cent and was expected to go up. In the last Lok Sabha polls, the percentage of voter turnout was 68 per cent.
In Arunachal Pradesh, polling could not take place at seven places as poll officials could not reach the designated areas due to local law and order issues and political rivalry, EC said.
In Nagaland, polling could not begin in a disputed area under Longleng district of Nagaland bordering Assam where security forces have prohibited entry of polling officials.
EC said Assam Police prohibited the entry of polling officials and setting up the Ladaigarh Polling Station (PS) No. 1 under 49 Tamlu Assembly constituency in the district.
Ladaigarh polling station with an electorate of 302 is located in a school which has been occupied by Assam Police since 2007 despite a Supreme Court order to maintain status quo.
Since the Assam Police has stopped the entry of polling officials, no alternative arrangement could be made.
“Yes, it was due to a border dispute between Assam and Nagaland. EC is investigating the issue,” Deputy EC Sudhir Tripathi told reporters here.
In Manipur, an EVM was damaged by a person in a Chandel district polling station at around 2.30 PM. It resulted in disruption of polling. An FIR has been lodged against the person.