Brisk polling in Uttarakhand, crosses 68%

RSTV Bureau
Haridwar:Women stand in line to cast their vote during Uttarakhand assembly election in Haridwar, Feb 15, 2017. Photo - PTI

Haridwar:Women stand in line to cast their vote during Uttarakhand assembly election in Haridwar, Feb 15, 2017.
Photo – PTI

Polling in Uttarakhand went on at a brisk pace with around 68 per cent of the electorate exercising their franchise, officials said. Haridwar led the rest of the districts recording the highest polling percentage of 62.

Other districts — Uttarkashi and Udhamsingh Nagar — were closing in recording a 60-per cent voter turnout each at 3 pm, the state election office said here.

Chief minister Harish Rawat is contesting from two seats — Haridwar (Rural) and Kichha in Udhamsingh Nagar district.

In the hill state of Uttarakhand, around 74.20 lakh voters will decide the fate of 628 candidates as 69 out of 70 assembly constituencies spread over 13 districts go to polls.

Polling in Karnaprayag seat has been put off to March 9 following the death of BSP candidate Kuldeep Singh Kanwasi in a road accident on Sunday.

Congress and BJP are locked in a straight contest in most of the seats but the presence of about a dozen rebel candidates in the fray as independents and the saffron party fielding former Congressmen may upset the calculations.

Chief Minister Harish Rawat has gone all out to woo voters by holding several public meetings and roadshows on daily basis in perhaps the most crucial election of his career.

A total of 30,000 security personnel including 105 companies of central armed police force, 25 companies of Provincial Armed Constabulary, Uttarakhand police and the homeguards have been deployed. For the first time voter verified paper audit trail (VVPAT) machines will be used in these elections in Uttarakhand.

The BJP has been attacking the ruling parties in both the states over corruption. Modi raised the issue of demonetisation and surgical strikes repeatedly at his rallies.

The Congress party have in turn accused Modi of failing to deliver on his promises and causing suffering to the common man with note ban.

(With inputs from the PTI)