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Voting Begins in Punjab, Goa

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Amritsar: Poll personnel collect Electronic Voting Machines before leaving for their respective booths on the eve of Punjab Assembly Polls in Amritsar on Feb 3, 2017. (Photo: IANS) by .
Poll personnel collect Electronic Voting Machines before leaving for their respective booths on the eve of Punjab Assembly Polls in Amritsar (Photo: IANS)

Election officials said taht polling for Goa’s 40 assembly seats got underway at 7 a.m. on Saturday morning….reports Asian Lite News

Amritsar: Poll personnel collect Electronic Voting Machines before leaving for their respective booths on the eve of Punjab Assembly Polls in Amritsar on Feb 3, 2017. (Photo: IANS) by .
Poll personnel collect Electronic Voting Machines before leaving for their respective booths on the eve of Punjab Assembly Polls in Amritsar (Photo: IANS)

A total of 251 candidates are contesting the Saturday polls, the main parties in the fray being the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, Indian National Congress, Aam Aadmi Party, Nationalist Congress Party, Shiv Sena, Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, Goa Suraksha Manch, among others.

Over 8,000 additional paramilitary personnel, in addition to the state police, have been despatched to the 1,642 polling stations across the state and other strategic locations to maintain law and order.

Goa has 11.08 lakh registered voters, who are entitled to exercise their franchise.

Polling ends at 5 p.m.

The 2012 state assembly polls recorded a highest ever voting percentage in the state last year at 82.2 per cent.

Voting began in all 117 assembly constituencies in Punjab  to decide the next government in the state.

Voting commenced at 8 a.m. and will continue till evening.

Tight security arrangements were in place across Punjab and the state’s borders with neighbouring states were sealed.

There are 22,600 polling stations in Punjab.

Over 1.98 crore electors will decide the fate of 1,145 candidates, including 81 women and a lone transgender candidate.

Voting for the by-election to the Amritsar Lok Sabha seat is also being held on Saturday.

The counting of votes will take place on March 11.

The main contest is among the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) alliance, which has been in power in Punjab since 2007, the Congress and the new entrant – Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).

For the first time, Punjab is witnessing three-cornered contests on all the 117 assembly seats.

Long queues were seen at most polling stations in Punjab as voting began in all 117 assembly constituencies in the state on Saturday.

Reports from various places indicated that voters queued up at polling stations much before 8 a.m.

The enthusiasm of voters was almost equal in rural and urban areas.

Among early voters were former Army chief and ex-governor Gen J.J. Singh (Patiala city) of the Shiromani Akali Dal, and former finance minister Manpreet Singh Badal (Badal village) of the Congress.

Reports of faulty electronic voting machines (EVMs) were received during early voting in Gurdaspur, Rajasansi (Amritsar), Sahnewal, Pathankot, Kharar and Bhoa assembly seats. This led to delay in voting process, election officials said.

In the 2012 assembly elections, 78.57 per cent of Punjab voters had exercised their franchise.

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