New Delhi, May 16 : Sixty per cent polling was reported on Friday in the second phase of Assembly elections in Karnataka.
Addressing media persons in New Delhi, Deputy Election Commissioner R. Bhattacharya said that the percentage could go up, as there were long queues of people waiting to cast their votes much after the closing time of 5 p.m.
He said the Superintendent of Police of Bellary has been transferred following certain allegations. In Bangalore the day was incident free.
Voters from ten districts of Raichur, Koppal, Uttara Kannada, Bellary, Chitradurga Davanagere, Shimoga, Udupi, Chikmagalur and Dakshina Kannada participated in the election.
To ensure peaceful elections at 12,271 polling stations, over 56,000 security personnel were deployed. Police gave shoot -at -sight orders to counter any disruptive activity. Around 16,000 paramilitary force personnel, including 500-strong anti-naxal force were also present to prevent any mishappening.
Around 11 million voters cast their verdict to decide the fate of 589 candidates, including Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)'s Chief Ministerial candidate B S Yeddyurappa.
Congress and BJP are the main contenders in many constituencies.
The shape of the Government in Karnataka hinges on the results of two constituencies of Shikaripura and Bellary. Shikaripura, which is Yeddyurappa's constituency, can be a deciding factor.
In Shikaripura, the contest is between Bangarappa and Yeddyurappa. They have been at the same post in the past, although, Yeddyurappa was in power for a week only. There will be tough competition between the two.
The third phase of elections will be held on May 22. Counting of votes will take place on May 25.
66 per cent voter turnout was registered in 89 of the total 224 assembly seats in the first phase of elections on May 10.
The assembly elections in Karnataka are crucial in wake of parliamentary elections in 2009.