More than 75 per cent of the 21.6 lakh voters in Meghalaya cast their votes today till 5 pm and the polling was peaceful, Chief Electoral Officer FR Kharkongor said.
Kharkongor said the percentage is likely to increase since numbers from many districts and polling stations are yet to reach.
A total of 369 candidates, including 36 women, are contesting the elections. The total number of voters in the State is 21,75,236 and out of them 10.99 lakh voters are female voters and 10.68 lakh voters are male voters.
The ruling National People’s Party (NPP) is contesting to retain power while the BJP, Trinamool Congress and other regional parties are attempting to bring about a change in the government.
The Congress and the BJP are contesting in 59 seats, while the NPP has put up nominees in 56 constituencies, the TMC in 57 and the UDP in 46.
“Polling was peaceful and it was smooth with less hiccups. In terms of machine malfunctioning we had few machines malfunctioning but not to a substantial degree,” Kharkongor said at a press conference.
In terms of ballot unit replacement rate was 0.82 per cent, control unit replacement was 0.79 per cent, VVPAT replacement was 2.69 per cent. The CEO informed that there was failure to erase mock poll VVPAT data during from three polling stations, two in East Garo Hills and one in East Jaiñtia Hills.
Total 1,830 PS were under webcast, he informed.
Poll in the six polling stations under Mawhati constituency in Ri Bhoi located along the inter-state border was peaceful as the election machinery coordinated with Assam.
There are 181 polling stations bordering Assam and 161 polling parties had to go through Assam. Police had also set up 31 interstate nakas and over 215 naka within the state for keeping strict vigil over the polls.
The voting percentage for senior citizens who opted for home voting was 91.8 per cent and 95 per cent were from the Persons with Disability (PWD) category.
Enforcement agencies have made the seizure of drugs, cash and freebies which was 20 times higher this year as compared to 2018.
Seizure of over Rs 74.18 crore was made since January 18 whereas the value of drugs seized was over Rs 33 crore and the value of cash was Rs 8.71 crore. The seizure made in 2018 was Rs 1.15 crore only, he said.
Meanwhile, the CEO informed that counting will start at 8 am on March 2. There are 13 counting centers across the state and 22 companies that have been retained by the police for guarding the strong room and also for any post poll contingencies.
ECI has deployed 27 counting observers and 549 micro observers.
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