Kohima: Nagaland witnessed a high 83.29 per cent turnout of voters to elect 59 members of the 60-member Assembly on Saturday with the polling by and large peaceful. Election to the Tuensang sadar seat was countermanded following the death of Congress candidate P Chuba Chang on Friday.
Prominent candidates whose fates were sealed in EVMs were Chief Minister Neiphiu Rio, Speaker Kiyanilie Peseyie, Opposition Leader Tokheho Yepthomi, Congress president SI Jamir and former Home Minister Imkong L Imchen from Koridang.
Till 4:00 pm, the official time for end of polling, 83.29 per cent of the electorate exercised their franchise, Chief Electoral Officer J Alam told reporters. The voting percentage could rise as there were still people in queue, particularly in Mokokchung and Wokha districts, he said.
He said that re-poll would be held in three polling stations - Hoshepu in Zunheboto district, polling station number 17 in Chizami Zavame village in Phek district and Ghaspani-II in Dimapur district.
At Hoshepu, armed miscreants prevented polling from being held, and at Zavame, EVMs and the electoral roll were damaged. At Ghaspani-II, voting could not be held because of a clash between supporters of two candidates, he said.
The date of re-polling would be announced by Sunday, he said. The election to the Tuensang seat will be held on March 23 and counting on for it on March 26, Alam said.
Asked about Assam police allegedly preventing polling at Ladigarh in Tamlu constituency in Longleng district, Alam said that he accepted that there were problems, but the final report from the district administration and returning officer were awaited. Only after receiving the final report would further action be taken, he added.
Deputy CEC, Sudhir Tripathi, lauded the efforts of the Church bodies and other civil societies in maintaining a clean election process. Counting will be held on February 28 for the 59 seats.