Raipur, Nov 20 (UNI) Amid heavy security arrangements polling for 2nd and last phase of assembly elections on 72 seats of Chhattisgarh went off peacefully. According to information available, 72 per cent people have exercised their franchise.
Talking to the reporters after conclusion of polling, the State Chief Electoral Officer Subrat Sahoo said that polling went off peacefully without report of any untoward incident from any of the centres.
He said that polling was conducted between 0700 hours and 1500 hours at Naxal-infested polling centres in Brindavangarh assembly constituency.
He said that long queues of voters were seen outside most of the polling centres even after the polling ended at 1700 pm in the evening. He said that 200 complaints about EVM malfunctioning were received and action was taken instantly to replace defective EVMs. He dismissed report about conspiracy behind EVM malfunctioning.
He said that Election Commission had deployed about 600 companies of Central and State Police Force to ensure peaceful conduct of polling.
With conclusion of polling, fate of 1079 candidates including 119 women in 2nd and last phase of elections has been confined in EVM. Total number of candidates for 2nd phase included 113 belonging to scheduled caste and 176 belonging to scheduled tribe.
Total 19336 centres were opened for voting. For convenience of women 118 Sangwari polling centres were set up. All members of polling teams in Sangawari centres were women.
Election Commission had made special arrangements for monitoring polling centres. To this end webcasting was done in 2112 polling centres for facilitating direct monitoring of State Election Office in Raipur from Election Commission Delhi.
In view of reports circulated by a particular political party over preparations to assess poll outcome by seeing VVPAT slips within 16 second through its polling agents in polling centres, the Election Commission had restricted mobile phones and all other electronic gadgets in polling centres.
Among prominent political figures whose fate has been confined in EVM today are Janta Congress-BSP alliance’s chief ministerial candidate Ajit Jogi (Marwari), Congress legislators’ team leader TS Singhdeo (Ambikapur), Pradesh Congress Committee President Bhupesh Baghel (Patan), State BJP President Dharam Kaushik (Belha), Assembly Speaker Gourishankar Agrawal (Kasdol), Congress Campaign Committee Chairman and former Union Minister Dr Charandas Mahant (Sakti).
Moreover, the Ministers whose fate has been confined in EVM are Brijmohan Agrawal (Raipur South), Amar Agrawal (Bilaspur), Prem Prakash Pandey (Bhilai Nagar), Rajesh Munat (Raipur West), Bhaiyaram Rajwade (Baikunthpur), Ramsevak Paikra (Pratappur), Punnulal Mohle (Mungeli) and Ajay Chandrakar (Kurud).
Most seats in this phase of elections are witnessing direct fight between ruling BJP and main opposition Congress. However, many other seats are witnessing triangular contest because of presence of Janta Congress-BSP alliance candidates. It has been learnt that Janta Congress-BSP alliance is influencing more on the seats in Bilaspur division.
Despite poor performance in Bastar during last assembly elections BJP had succeeded in forming government for the third consecutive term because of its better performance in this phase of elections. This time, however, it faces challenge to repeat its performance.
BJP sought support of people in formation of its government for 4th consecutive tenure by highlighted development during the last 15 years and reminding of neglect to this region during undivided Madhya Pradesh and first three years of state formation under Congress rule.
Whereas Congress called upon the people to extend support for a change by levelling serious corruption charges against 15-year old BJP government in the state. Janta Congress-BSP alliance sought votes as third alternative to national parties.
The Insides Speak.