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Lok Sabha polls 2024: Around 40% turnout recorded till 1 pm; stray incidents of violence in Bengal

Minor EVM glitches were reported at some booths in Tamil Nadu, Arunachal Pradesh, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Assam.
Last Updated : 19 April 2024, 09:07 IST
Last Updated : 19 April 2024, 09:07 IST

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New Delhi: An estimated voter turnout of 40 per cent was recorded in the first six hours of polling on Friday in phase one of the Lok Sabha elections covering 102 seats across 21 states and Union territories amidst sporadic incidents of violence in West Bengal and an IED blast in Chhattisgarh that left a CRPF commandant injured.

Minor EVM glitches were reported at some booths in Tamil Nadu, Arunachal Pradesh, Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Assam.

Polling began at 7 AM and will end at 6 PM. Election officials said the highest turnout till 1 pm was recorded in Tripura which saw 53.04 per voters casting their vote and the lowest in Lakshwadeep which saw 29.91 voting percentage.

West Bengal recorded a turnout of 50.96 per cent till 1 pm. However, polling was marred by violence in the Cooch Behar seat.

TMC and BJP workers clashed with each other and lodged 80 and 39 complaints respectively related to poll violence, voter intimidation, and assault on poll agents, sources from both parties said.

In strife-torn Manipur, around 45.68 per cent polling was recorded.

An altercation broke out between locals and unidentified persons in Thongju assembly constituency under the Inner Manipur Lok Sabha seat In Chhattisgarh, more than 42 per cent of the electorate cast their votes in the Naxal-hit Bastar Lok Sabha constituency where an assistant commandant of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) was injured when an improvised explosive device (IED) planted by Naxalites went off in Bijapur district.

A CRPF jawan deployed on poll security duty was also injured when a shell of an under-barrel grenade launcher (UBGL) accidentally exploded in Bijapur district.

In Tamil Nadu, where polling is spread over 39 constituencies, a voting percentage of over 39 per cent was recorded.

Voting was delayed by an hour in some polling booths in the state such as the one near Tambaram due to technical glitches in the electronic voting machines.

Arunachal Pradesh saw 34.99 per cent of the total 8,92,694 voters exercising their franchise.Though the turnout was moderate in the morning hours due to inclement weather, it gathered momentum with weather conditions improving.

In a few polling stations in the state, polling was delayed as the electronic voting machines (EVMs) developed technical snags which were later replaced, Chief Electoral Officer Pawan Kumar Sain said.

Andaman and Nicobar Islands saw a voting percentage of 35.7 per cent.There were some minor EVM glitches but it was addressed immediately, officials said.

Assam also reported EVM malfunctioning at three polling booths of Bihpuria in Lakhimpur, one each in Hojai, Kaliabor and Bokakhat, and one in Naharkatia of Dibrugarh, an official said.

"Most of the glitches were noticed during the mock poll, which started 90 minutes before the commencement of actual voting. Those glitches were rectified immediately. Voting started sometime late in those booths and now it is going smoothly," officials said.

The state saw a polling percentage of 45.12 per cent.

Around 32 per cent of the 75 lakh voters in four Lok Sabha constituencies of Bihar exercised their franchise till 1 pm.

Braving incessant rains, 43.11 per cent of voters exercised their choice in the first six hours of polling in Jammu and Kashmir's Udhampur parliamentary constituency.

In Rajasthan, over 33 percent voting took place till 1 pm.

Uttarakhand saw over 37 per cent polling till 1 pm. Nainital-Udham Singh Nagar recorded the highest 40.46 per cent polling followed by Haridwar with 39.41 per cent, Pauri Garhwal with 36.60 per cent, Tehri Garhwal with 35.29 per cent and Almora with 32.29 per cent polling.

In Maharashtra, a voter turnout of 32.36 per cent was recorded till 1 pm while the six Lok Sabha seats in Madhya Pradesh recorded a voter turnout of 44.18 per cent.

Uttar Pradesh witnessed 36.96 per cent voting, Meghalaya 48.9, Mizoram 36.67, Nagaland 38.83, Puducherry 44.95 and Sikkim 36.82.

Over 16.63 crore people are eligible to vote in this phase. In the first phase, there are 35.67 lakh first time voters, besides 3.51 crore young voters in the age group of 20-29 years.

Counting of votes in the elections that will conclude on June one will be taken up on June 4.

Polling is being held for all seats of Tamil Nadu (39), Uttarakhand (5), Arunachal Pradesh (2), Meghalaya (2), Andaman and Nicobar Islands (1), Mizoram (1), Nagaland (1), Puducherry (1), Sikkim (1) and Lakshadweep (1).

Besides, voting is underway in 12 seats of Rajasthan, eight in Uttar Pradesh, six in Madhya Pradesh, five seats each in Assam and Maharashtra, four in Bihar, three in West Bengal, two in Manipur, and one seat each in Tripura, Jammu and Kashmir and Chhattisgarh.

Simultaneously, assembly elections are being held in Arunachal Pradesh (60 seats) and Sikkim (32 seats).

The Election Commission has deployed over 18 lakh polling personnel across 1.87 lakh polling stations.

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Published 19 April 2024, 09:07 IST

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