Guwahati: As the polling for the third and last phase of Assam legislative assembly elections came to an end by yesterday evening, Assam electorates recorded over 82 % turnout in a largely peaceful electoral exercise. The fate of 337 candidates including 25 women aspirants in 40 assembly constituencies under 12 districts of western Assam is now sealed in EVMs and will be revealed on 2 May next. People were seen in the queue since early morning hours for exercising their franchises. The first phase (on 27 March) poling in 47 constituencies recorded 79.97% voters’ turnout and the second one (on 1 April) in 39 seats showed an 80.96% outcome. The election machinery put all arrangements for conducting free, fair and peaceful polling in 11,401 polling stations, where over 45,600 polling personnel were engaged. According to State’s chief electoral officer Nitin Khade, over 30,000 central armed forces along with State police personnel were deployed, as altogether 79,19,641 general electors (among them 39,07,963 females, 139 trans genders and 26,460 service voters) had the opportunity to decide their representatives in their respective constituencies. In the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic, the election authority had taken all possible precautionary measures have been taken for the safety of election officials and the voters. Each and every polling station are sanitized one day prior to polling and the facility of thermal scanning, hand sanitisers, face masks are made available at polling stations. Assured minimum facilities like drinking water, waiting shed, toilet, necessary lighting, wheelchairs for needy electors were also made available for the benefit of voters. High profile candidates in this phase include Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leaders Himanta Biswa Sarma, Ranjeet Kumar Dass, Siddhartha Bhattacharya, Chandra Mohan Patowary, Atul Bora, Ashok Kumar Singhi, Narayan Deka, Suman Haripriya, Ashwini Ray Sarkar, etc, BJP’s ally Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) nominees Phani Bhushan Choudhury, Ramendra Narayan Kalita, Gunindra Nath Das, Kalpana Patowary, etc. For the opposition Congress party, Rekibuddin Ahmed, Nandita Das, Ashima Bordoloi, Mira Borthakur, Wazed Ali Choudhury, Sherman Ali Ahmed, Abdur Rashid Mandal, Sukur Ali Ahmed, Jakir Hussain Sikdar, Abul Kalam Rasheed Alam, etc sought votes in respective seats. It's ally Bodoland People's Front (BPF) nominated Pramila Rani Brahma, Chandan Brahma, Majendra Narzary, Charan Boro, Rabiram Narzary, Kamalshing Narzary, Prabin Boro and AIUDF had Hafiz Bashir Ahmed, Nazrul Haque, Nizanur Rahman, etc in the fray. Assam overall has total 2,33,74,087 general electors out of which 1,18,23,286 are males, 1,15,50,403 females and 398 trans genders. There were 63,074 service voters too. Postal ballot facility was available for the senior citizens (above 80 years), disabled individuals, Covis-19 affected or suspected persons and employees in essential services. Till 3 April, over 25,000 postal ballots were issued by the election authority.
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