Bumper Voting in Tripura as turnout breaches 87 percent mark

Thursday, 16 February 2023 (19:21 IST)
Agartala: Altogether 87.63 per cent voting was recorded in the final count of EVMs for the Tripura Assembly polls amid reported of a few incidents of poll violence including serious injuries to at least 12 workers of opposition CPI-M, officials said on Friday.However, election officials anticipate a further increase in vote casting through postal ballots.
A presiding officer in Kamalpur of Dhalai district was assaulted by TIPRA Motha workers on Thursday when he was waiting for depositing the polled EVM. The victim official identified as Asim Shil alleged that he had forgotten to pull out the battery from the EVM while sealing it. Before submission in the strong room, he noticed the battery was on and then attempted to release it, when Motha workers allegedly thrashed him.
Two incidents of EVM snatching attempts were reported - one each in the Golaghati and Bagbasa assembly constituencies. But the attempts failed and the EVMs were recovered untampered. However, nobody was arrested in connection with the incidents.
State social welfare minister and BJP candidate of Pecharthal constituency Santana Chakma alleged that she escaped narrowly from a murderous attack by Motha workers in the Andharcherra area of North Tripura.
“At the last hour of polling, I got the information that EVM in a booth was malfunctioning and the situation was volatile. When I reached the spot, a violent gang of Motha cadres attacked me breaking the security cover. Somehow, I managed to escape the attack with little injuries and harassment,” Chakma told the media.
Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Pratima Bhowmik was accused of rigging and preventing voters from exercising their franchise in a few booths of her constituency in Dhanpur of Sepahijala district. Extra force deployment was made in her constituency when more than 300 villagers launched a protest against Bhowmik and blockaded the road demanding they be allowed to vote.
According to the report, BJP and TIPRA Motha supporters hurled bombs, and attacked a few houses of the supporters of each other in Charilam constituency where Deputy Chief Minister Jishnu Dev Varma is in the fray.
The ruling and opposition parties have appreciated the role of the Election Commission of India in conducting a free, fair, and relatively peaceful election.
State Chief Electoral Officer Kiran Gitte on Friday said that ECI’s mission of zero poll violence and mission 929 aiming to improve polling percentage in 929 booths across the state, have become successful.
A total seizure of Rs 44 Crore was made till the previous night of polling from the day of announcement of the election in the state, he pointed out.
This included Rs 3.44 Crore of cash, liquor worth Rs 2.58 Crore, drugs of Rs 26.77 Crore, precious metals of Rs 3.42 Crore and Rs 8.47 Crore of freebies.
Around 24.66 lakh voters - including 62 third genders - out of a total of 28.13 lakhs have sealed the fate of 259 candidates including 20 women aspirants across the state.
The votes will be counted on March 2 together with Meghalaya and Nagaland where polling is scheduled on Feb 27.(UNI)

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