Odisha: Phase II polls record 73.43% voter turnout

The ECI has also appointed senior administrative officer Dileep Kumar Mohapatra as the additional district magistrate of Boudh and returning officer of Kantamal Assembly segment.
Women queued up to cast their vote for the general election.
Women queued up to cast their vote for the general election. (Representational Photo | AP)

BHUBANESWAR: The second phase elections in Odisha held on Monday recorded 73.43 per cent polling even as the Election Commission of India (ECI) ordered re-polling in two booths of Kantamal Assembly segment under Kandhamal Lok Sabha constituency.

According to a release issued by the chief electoral officer (CEO), re-polling will be held in booths 26 and 28 on May 23 from 7 am to 4 pm. Direction has been issued to the district election officer-cum-collectors of Boudh and Kandhamal to inform all the candidates of Kandhamal LS constituency, Kantamal Assembly seat and voters of these booths regarding re-polling, CEO NB Dhal said in the release.

The ECI has also appointed senior administrative officer Dileep Kumar Mohapatra as the additional district magistrate of Boudh and returning officer of Kantamal Assembly segment. Irregularities in polling were witnessed after outsiders entered the two booths. Despite the irregularities, the presiding officers did not stop polling in these booths. The presiding officer of booth 26 was also taken into custody for the lapse.

Earlier, a delegation of BJP leaders led by former state president Samir Mohanty had submitted a memorandum to CEO Dhal in this regard and demanded re-polling in booths 26 and 29. They alleged that both these booths were captured by BJD workers and their hired goons. They said polling was stopped in booth 28 for the same reason, but it went on in rest two booths.

Meanwhile, Bargarh LS constituency has recorded the highest 79.78 per cent polling in the second phase election held on May 20 followed by 77.52 per cent in Balangir. Kandhamal and Sundargarh LS seats witnessed 73.66 per cent and 73.02 per cent polling. Aska recorded the lowest polling of 62.67 per cent.

In 2019, 72.09 per cent polling was recorded in the second phase. Bargarh had recorded 78.37 per cent followed by 74.91 per cent in Balangir, 73.1 per cent in Kandhamal and 71.89 per cent in Sundargarh. In last elections too, Aska LS seat had recorded the lowest polling of 65.79 per cent.

Among the Assembly constituencies, Bhatli in Bargarh LS constituency recorded the highest polling of 84.11 per cent followed by 83.99 per cent in Kantamal. Other constituencies in which polling crossed 80 per cent are Sonepur (83.21), Jharsuguda (82.75), Birmaharajpur (81.92), Boudh (81.44), Bonai (81.14) and Bijepur (80.68). Aska recorded the lowest polling of 59.05 per cent among the Assembly segments.

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