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45 pc voting in last phase of UP polls

Amid tight security arrangements around 45 per cent electorate exercised their franchise in the last phase of state assembly elections in 59 constituencies of UP on Tuesday, reports Masoodul Hasan.

india Updated: Jun 22, 2012 13:15 IST

Amid tight security arrangements around 45 per cent electorate exercised their franchise in the last phase of state assembly elections in 59 constituencies on Tuesday.

The Chief Electoral Officer AK Bishnoi said that "polling was peaceful in all constituencies". He said tight security arrangements had been made in all nine districts.

Even though polling was incident-free the rape of a girl by a jawan of central para-military force (CPMF) in Dhuriapar and molestation in Majuri in Maharajganj on Monday night painted the force in black hues. Bishnoi said "two CRPF jawans Raj Kumar and Jaisika have been arrested and three were placed under suspension in the two cases".

Bishnoi said the commission had received 35 complaints about technical problems in the electronic voting machines and 30 complaints about disappearance of names from voter lists. The Chief Electoral Officer AK Bishnoi said "apart from deployment of 650 companies of central para-military forces, the commission had deployed around 50 companies of PAC and a large number of civil police".

The district-wise polling percentage was Faizabad (46.92), Ambedkar Nagar (49.66), Gorakhpur (41.97), Maharajganj (43.31), Kushinagar (43.83), Deoria (42.45), Mau (42.45) , Azamgarh (43.15) and Balia (40.92). He said the highest polling was 53 per cent in Jalalpur and the lowest was 37 per cent each in Bansgaon and Dwaba. In 2002, the polling percentage was 53.73 and in the 2004 Lok Sabha elections the percentage was 48.89.

The Election Commission has made special arrangements in sensitive districts like Gorakhpur, Azamgarh, Mau, Maharajganj and Faizabad.

According to information a large numbers of voters thronged polling centers early in the morning to cast their vote. Of the total 1.78 crore voters 45 per cent voted for 934 candidates including 49 women.

In Bansdih (Balia), the CPMF Jawans did not allow the entry of minister Ram Govind Chaudhury into the polling station. Some people were taken into custody in village Nakka in Dwaba constituency for threatening Dalits. One police officer in Balia was removed from duty on the charge of forcing people to vote for the Samajwadi Party.

The Deputy Election Commissioner JP Prakash hopped around in all the constituencies by helicopter to monitor the poll progress. Nine additional observers were also on duty in each district. Prominent candidates are Congress candidate Ram Naresh Yadav (Phulpur), Ministers Ambika Choudhury (Copachit), Ram Govind Chouhdury (Bansdih), Narad Rai (Balia), Kameshwar Upadhaya, criminal-turned-politician Harishanker Tiwari (Chilupar), Pawan Pandey (Akbarpur), Amarmani Tripathi (Laxmipur), Mukhtar Ansari (Mau), BSP candidate Lalji Verma (Tanda) and rebel SP MP Beni Prasad Verma (Ayodhya).

First Published: May 08, 2007 09:00 IST