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First phase polling in Asom ends peacefully, 65 per cent votes polls

Written by: Staff
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Guwahati, Apr 3 (UNI) In an unprecedented peaceful voting in Asom, more than 65 per cent of the electorate today exercised franchise in the first phase of Assembly elections in the state in the state 65 constituencies.

The remaining 61 constituencies would go to polls in the second and final phase on April 10.

According to the Election Commission control room, the final poll percentage might go up.

Political parties, however, attributed erratic weather condition and strict guidelines of the EC for the ''low turnout.'' There was no report of violence, not even a minor incident, from any part of the 65 constituencies that went to the polls. This is the first election, which has not been overshadowed by violence or boycott call from militant groups.

Palasbari constituency, near Guwahati recorded the highest 76 per cent polling followed by Jonai and Dhemaji, which witnessed about 72 per cent votings.

Over 92 lakh voters were expected to exercise their franchise rights in 9,723 polling booths spread over 14 districts to elect representatives to 12th Assembly from 65 constituencies in the first phase.

Low polling was recorded in certain minority-dominated areas in Barak Valley and Central Asom. The voters were asked to produce any of the 23 documents as prescribed by the EC to identify themselves before casting votes.

Reports from different parts of the state suggested that upper Asom constituencies had maximum turnout although the urban area voters' came up in lesser number in the early hours of polling.

The districts of Dhemaji, Dibrugarh, Tinsukia and Majuli river island had recorded the maximum polling till afternoon. Majuli recorded the highest polling figure of 69 per cent vote. The turnout in urban centers such as Guwahati (Sadar), Jorhat and Silchar had been considerably low.

The Barak valley also saw a good turnout some constituencies like Lakhimpur had 60 per cent polling.

Asom Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi cast his vote in DCB College polling booth at Jorhat town.

He is contesting from neighbouring Titabor constituency in the district.

Eds here Pick up suitably from earlier series.

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