70% votes cast in Manipur Assembly by-elections till noon

Imphal: An estimated 70 per cent votes were cast till noon in the by-elections to two assembly segments of Manipur Thangmeiband and Thongju.

Altogether 54,751 voters are eligible to decide the fate of six candidates in the by-elections for which polling started from 7 AM and will end at 4 PM. An estimated 70 per cent votes were polled in the by-poll till 1:30 pm, the SEC said.

While there were 26,537 voters in Thangmeiband Assembly constituency, an estimated 28,214 were eligible to cast their franchise in Thongju Assembly segment, the SEC said.

The Chief Election officer O Nabakishore, also the Chief Secretary of Manipur, said that in addition to the three observers deputed by the Election Commission of India, micro-observers and sector Magistrates have been monitoring the election process on Saturday.

O Nabakishore said that voters who are not in possession of voter identity cards have been allowed to exercise their franchise by showing any one of the 12 identity-proof documents recognised by the ECI like passport, driving licence, PAN card, smart card issued by RGI, pension document, passbook issued by bank, service ID, official ID issued to MPs and MLAs.

For the first time in the electoral history of Manipur State, photographs of candidates were displayed in the EVMs apart from assigning a symbol against NOTA key, he said.

In Thangmeiband Assembly constituency, three contenders are - Kh Joykishan of BJP, Jyotin waikhom of Indian National Congress and GA Tonsana Sharma of Manipur Democratic People Front (MDPF).

In Thongju assembly constituency, three contestants are - GA Tonsana Sharma of MDPF, Bijoy Koijam of INC and Th Bishwajit Singh of BJP.

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