35% voting in Tripura LS polls



Around 35 per cent voting was recorded till 12 p.m. on Tuesday in the polling for the Tripura East parliamentary constituency in Tripura, election officials said.

The officials said that in around 100 polling stations, voting was temporarily halted due to the malfunctioning of either the Electronic Voting Machines (EVM) or the Voter-Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) machines.

Voting fbegan amidst heavy security at 7 a.m. and will end at 5 p.m. A total of 1,257,944 electorates, including 620,291 women, are eligible to exercise their franchise and decide the fate of 10 candidates.

A total of 1,645 polling stations, including 31 to be managed by only women polling officials and security personnel, have been set up.

Meanwhile, police spokesman Subrata Chakraborty said that no untoward incident was reported from anywhere in the mountainous tribal reserve Lok Sabha constituency spread across six districts.

The main contest is expected between the Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M) sitting MP Jitendra Choudhury, ruling Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) Rebati Tripura and Maharaj Kumari Pragya Deb Barman of the Congress.

The Election Commission in an unprecedented move has appointed six Observers including former Deputy Election Commissioner Vinod Zutshi as Special Observer for the seat.

A record number of around 10,000 Central Para-Military Forces, Tripura State Rifles troopers and state police personnel were also deployed in the constituency, bordering Bangladesh, Assam and Mizoram.

Citing a "non-conducive security situation", following reports by the Chief Electoral Officer Sriram Taranikanti, the Special Central Police Observer Mrinal Kanti Das, Returning Officer Vikas Singh and intelligence inputs, the poll panel last week had deferred voting to the seat from April 18 to April 23.

Tripura has two Lok Sabha constituencies. Polling in the Tripura West seat was held on April 11. IANS