LIVE: Polling for the second and final phase of Chhattisgarh Assembly elections, with voting taking place in 72 constituencies spread across 19 districts, officially ended on Tuesday. Around 71.93 per cent voter turnout was recorded till 6 pm, an official said.
The voting time ended at 5 pm, but voters were still standing in the queues, waiting for their turn at several polling booths across the state. The voting percentage is, therefore, likely to rise.
A total of 1,079 candidates, including 119 women, are contesting in 72 constituencies of the state with an electorate of 15,400,596.
This was the last of the two-phase polls to the 90-member Assembly, where the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has been in power for the last 15 years.
Addressing a press conference in New Delhi, Deputy Election Commissioner Umesh Sinha said the polling percentage
is likely to rise further as a number of people were still in the queue for voting. He said the polling percentage
for this phase is slightly higher than that recorded during 2013 which was 71.13 per cent.
The EC said with Tuesday's polling percentage
the total average turnout for Chhattisgarh has been 74.17 per cent, which may go up further. During the first phase of voting on November 12 for 18 seats in the Naxal-affected areas of the state, a total of 76.42 per cent polling was recorded.
The time of polling was from 8 am to 5 pm, but in two polling booths -- Amamora (booth no 72) and Modh (no 76) in Bindranavgarh constituency (Gariaband district) -- voting was held from 7 am to 3 pm due to Naxal threats, the official said.
There were reports of technical snags in EVMs at some places, which delayed the polling process, he said.
Chief Minister Raman Singh, his wife Veena Singh and son Abhishek Singh, a BJP
MP from Rajnandaon district, voted in Kawardha constituency.
State ministers, including Brijmohan Agrawal, Rajesh Munat and Premparkash Pandey, besides State Congress
chief Bhupesh Baghel and Leader of Opposition TS Singhdeo, exercised their franchise in their respective areas.
In the second phase of polling, extra vigil is being maintained in districts including Gariaband, Dhamtari, Mahasamund, Kabirdham, Jashpur and Balrampur, which are Naxal-affected areas, the official said.
The counting of votes will be held on December 11.