75% voter turnout in Himachal Pradesh

75% voter turnout in Himachal Pradesh

Last Updated: Sun, Nov 04, 2012 20:00 hrs

About 75 per cent of voters turned up to exercise their franchise in the Himachal Pradesh Assembly elections on Sunday, said Narinder Chauhan , chief electoral officer.

The fate of the 459 candidates will be known only on December 20. Counting of votes of the Gujarat elections will also happen on December 20.

Polling in Himachal was conducted in a single phase this time for the 68 Assembly seats. Voting was smooth and peaceful, barring incidents of electronic voting machines not working at 10 places. The machines were later replaced.

Voting was reported to be the highest in Sirmaur and Solan districts and lowest was in Shimla district.

No party has been able to come back to power in Himachal for a consecutive term since 1985. Chief Minister P K Dhumal is trying to break the anti-incumbency jinx. He led the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s campaign, against main rival and five-time former chief minister Virbhadra Singh of the Congress.

Dhumal is contesting from Hamirpur and Singh from Shimla (Rural). The election campaign was a high-pitched one, with national leaders flying in to the hill state to campaign. While the BJP and the Congress contested in all the 68 seats, the Bahujan Samaj Party fielded candidates in 66, while the new Himachal Lokhit Party fought for 36 seats. The Trinamool Congress fielded 25 candidates, CPI(M) 15, Lok Janshakti Party 17, Samajwadi Party 14 and the Nationalist Congress Party 13.

Himachal Pradesh has 100 per cent coverage of photo identity cards, said Chauhan.

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