Counting begins in four states, one UT

Counting begins in four states, one UT
Counting of votes for the recent Assembly polls began in West Bengal, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Assam and Puducherry. The final results are expected to be out by 3 pm.

West Bengal
Counting of votes for the 294 seats of West Bengal Assembly began today across 90 venues spread all over the state.

A team of 20,000 personnel from the state and central government has been deployed to count votes in 394 counting halls which are being guarded by 78 companies of central forces.

Elections in the state were held in six-phases beginning from April 4 with 1961 candidates including 198 women in the fray. The alliance of Left parties and Congress are throwing a major challenge to the ruling Trinamool Congress government.

Despite being on the backfoot because of the Saradha chit fund scam and the Narada sting operation, several exit polls have predicted that Mamata Banerjee will return to power.

A tight three-tier security layer has been laid out during the counting process with Sec 144 being imposed on a 100 metre radius of counting venues. The innermost security layer is being manned by central forces and state police personnel is not allowed to enter the counting hall.

Only authorised personnel are allowed to enter the venue while only the observers have been given the liberty to carry mobile phones with them. Each of the 294 constituencies has one counting observer to monitor the entire process. Additionally, a videographer is also documenting the counting in all centres.

Tamil Nadu
Counting of votes for the 232 Assembly constituencies in Tamil Nadu, where polling was held on May 16 to decide the fate of over 3,700 candidates, including Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa and DMK chief M Karunanidhi, commenced this morning.

Besides Jayalalithaa and Karunanidhi, the electoral field also has two other Chief Ministerial candidates - actor-turned politician Vijayakant of DMDK-PWF-TMC combine and PMK's Anbumani Ramad.

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