LS polls: Over 59 pc turnout till 4 pm in MP

LS polls: Over 59 pc turnout till 4 pm in MP

Election officials carry EVM and VVPAT machines and other equipments ahead of the seventh and last phase of Lok Sabha polls. (Photo PTI)

Around 59.38 per cent voter turnout was recorded till 4 pm on Sunday in the eight Lok Sabha seats of Madhya Pradesh, an official said.

Polling was underway since 7 am in the eight seats - Dewas, Ujjain, Mandsaur, Ratlam, Dhar, Indore, Khargone and Khandwa - in the fourth and final phase of Lok Sabha elections in the state, Chief Electoral Officer V L Kantha Rao said.

The voting figures till 4 pm were: Dewas- 63.88 per cent, Ujjain 58.76 per cent, Mandsaur- 62.52 per cent, Ratlam- 59.73 per cent, Dhar- 58.69 per cent, Indore 54.55 per cent, Khargone- 59.95 per cent and Khandwa- 58.56 per cent, another poll official said.

The corresponding figures for 1 pm were: Dewas-42.99 per cent, Ujjain-43.42 per cent, Mandsaur-47.45 per cent, Ratlam- 44.83 per cent, Dhar- 42.12 per cent, Indore-33.04 per cent, Khargone-40.43 per cent and Khandwa-36.33 per cent.

However, voters listed at a booth in Agar Malwa district falling under the Dewas seat and five booths in Mandsaur seat boycotted the polling over some of their demands, Rao said, without elaborating further.

Efforts were on to persuade the voters to exercise their democratic right, he said.

Rao said around 12 people cast their votes at the polling booth in Dewas after being persuaded by the election officials there.

Long queues were seen at several other booths in the eight constituencies, all currently held by the BJP.

Prominent candidates in the fray are former Union ministers Kantilal Bhuria and Arun Yadav of the Congress, who are contesting from Ratlam and Khandwa seats, respectively.

Altogether 82 candidates, including Bhuria and Yadav, are contesting in the eight constituencies where there are 1.49 crore eligible voters.

Total 18,411 polling booths, including 1,157 entirely managed by women, have been set up in these seats, Rao said.

An average 69.26 per cent voter turnout was recorded in the first three phases of the Lok Sabha polls in the state, he added.

Out of the total 29 Lok Sabha seats in MP, six went to polls on April 29, seven on May 6 and eight on May 12.

The counting of votes would be held on May 23.