58% polling in Himachal till 3 pm

The four Lok Sabha seats of Himachal Pradesh witnessed a turnout of 58.15 per cent till 3 pm on Sunday, officials said.

Interestingly, a turnout of 132 per cent has been recorded in the world's highest polling station in Tashigang village of Lahaul and Spiti district, a district official said.

There are total 49 registered voters in the Tashigang polling station. Of these, 33 voters cast their votes till 3 pm. Apart from the registered voters, 32 members of the election staff deployed at the polling station and several nearby booths cast their vote after showing election duty certificate (EDCs) issued to them, the official said.

The Tashigang polling station is situated at a height of 15,256 feet above the sea level, said Harbans Lal Dhiman, the state's assistant chief electoral officer said.

The temperature was below the freezing point at Tashigang when polling began at 7 am. The voters came to the polling station while wearing their traditional attire for exercising their right to franchise.

A bridegroom, Anil, exercised his right to franchise at the Kothi polling station in Manali in Kullu district, an election official said.

The first Indian voter, Shyam Saran Negi, aged 101, cast his vote at Kinnaur district's Kalpa polling booth of Mandi Lok Sabha seat. He was given warm welcome by the election staff at the booth.

Chief Minister Shri Jai Ram Thakur and his family members cast his vote at Bharari (Murhag) in Seraj assembly constituency of Mandi district.

EVM snags delayed voting at nine polling stations. It restarted after the nine faulty EVMs were replaced, a state election officer said. Webcasting is successfully being done in 776 booths, he added.

Polling is underway in Shimla (SC), Mandi, Hamirpur and Kangra. Five MLAs, including a state minister, are among the 45 candidates in fray.

A total of 7,730 polling stations have been set up in 4 constituencies -- Shimla (SC), Mandi, Hamirpur and Kangra -- in the state where 53,30,154 registered voters are registered.