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Odisha records 60.07 pc voter turnout, likely to rise further as polling continues after 6 PM

Odisha records 60.07 pc voter turnout, likely to rise further as polling continues after 6 PM

Bhubaneswar, May 25 (UNI) The voter turnout of 60.07 percent recorded in Odisha in Six Lok Sabha and 42 Assembly seats, will likely rise further, as voters in several polling booths are still exercising their franchise, CEO office sources said.
A lady Polling officer identified as Sujata Mitra posted at the polling booth number 114 of Hadibandhu school in Cuttack fell sick during the duty hour. she was rushed to the SCB Medical College and Hospital where she succumbed to her illness.
As per the ECI announcement, an ex-gratia of Rs 15 lakh will be paid to the family members of the deceased polling official.
ECI official sources said till 1800 hours, about 60.07 percent of the total 94.41 lakh voters had exercised their franchise in 10,551 polling booths spread over ten districts in the state.
The lowest polling of 53.54 percent was reported from Bhubaneswar Lok Sabha Constituency while Sambalpur Lok Sabha Constituency recorded 68.87 percent, the highest among the six lok Sabha Constituencies where polling was held today.
Cuttack Lok Sabha Constituency reported 54.36 percent polling while Keonjhar, Puri and Dhenkanal Lok sabha Constituencies recorded 62.43 percent, 61.17 percent and 60.88 percent respectively.
Kuchinda assembly constituency under Sambalpur Lok Sabha seat, recorded 79.24 percent polling, the highest among 42 Assembly Constituencies. Pallahara Assembly segment under Dhenkanal Lok Sabha Constituency also reported a maximum 73.86 percent polling.
In several booths, voting was still continuing even after 6.30 PM, the CEO office sources said, adding that the total voter turnout will rise further after the polling is completed.
CEO sources said the voters who have received a token and are inside the polling station, will be allowed to cast their ballots and in some booths, the polling was delayed due to technical snag in the EVM machines which were later replaced.
The third phase election to 6 Lok Sabha and 42 Assembly seats in Odisha on Saturday was, however, marred with stray incidents of violence, group clash and allegation of booth rigging in some places.
Odisha CEO Nikunja Bihari Dhal and City Police Commissioner Sanjeeb Panda have monitored the polling process through webcasting.
Dhal said they have examined the incident of BJD sitting MLA from Chhendipada attacking some BJP workers at a booth and asked the police to enquire into the incident and file FIR in connection with the violence.The CEO assured that action will be taken in the case.
In Athgarh Assembly constituency, a group clash was reported between the two warring groups of BJD and BJP in the presence of Odisha Minister R P Swain from booth number 115 at Radha Gobindapur in which at least three BJP workers were injured.
BJP Khurda candidate and sitting Chilka MLA Prashant Jagdev staged a dharna at Begunia police station against his illegal detention by the police following damage of an EVM machine by Jagdev.
The ruling BJD had alleged that Jagdev had gone to a polling booth at Kaunripatna in Bolgarh along with his supporters and damaged an electronic voting machine (EVM).
On the other hand, Jagdev strongly refuted the allegation and demanded the CCTV footage of the polling booth be checked to ascertain the fact.
A polling agent at booth number 136 in Hindol identified as Sukadev Patnaik from Bahalunda area fell sick and unconscious during polling .He was immediately rushed to the hospital where the doctors declared him dead.
Similarly in another incident, an elderly woman at a booth in Nayagarh became unconscious while standing in line to cast her ballot. She was also rushed to the nearby hospital but the doctor declared her dead.
Tension prevailed at booth number 127 at Gadarundanga in Brahmagiri assembly constituency when Brahmagiri Assembly BJP candidate Upasana Mohaptar alleged that the Presiding officer misbehaved with her while she was inside the polling booth. She lodged a complaint with the District polling officer against the Presiding officer .
The polling which was disrupted after the incident later resumed after the intervention of senior police officers who rushed to the spot with additional force and pacified the situation.
Today’s Polling will decide the fate of 64 Lok Sabha and 383 Assembly candidates.
Among the heavyweights whose electoral fortunes will be decided today in the six Lok Sabha elections are Union Education Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, BJP Spokesperson Dr. Sambit Patra, Bhubaneswar sitting MP and BJP spokesperson Aparajita Sarangi, six-time MP Bhartruhari Mahtab (all from the BJP), BJD organizational secretary Pranab Prakash Das, former Mumbai Police Commissioner Arup Patnaik, ex-director of corporate affairs of Aditya Birla Group Santrupta Mishra from the ruling BJD, and Odisha Chhatra Congress President Sayed Yashir Nawaz from the Congress.
Similarly, in the 42 Assembly seats, the prominent candidates whose fate will be sealed today include BJD veterans and former ministers Debi Prasad Mishra and Prasanna Acharya, two council of ministers Ashok Chandra Panda and Ranendra Pratap Swain, five former BJD ministers, and several sitting MLAs.
Other heavyweights whose fate have been sealed in the ballot boxes are the leader of opposition in the Odisha Assembly Jaya Narayan Mishra (BJP), former Odisha Congress President Jaydeb Jena, eminent journalist-turned-politician Soumyaranjan Pattnaik, prominent trade union leader Sanatan Mahakud, and Pruthivi Ballav Pattnaik, son of former Chief Minister J. B. Pattnaik.
Elections in three phases on May 13, 20 and 25 covering 15 Lok Sabha and 105 Assembly seats in the state were completed .The last phase of election to rest 6 Lok Sabha and 42 Assembly seats will be held on June 1 next.
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