Kohima/Dimapur, May 28: As expected Lok Sabha by-election witnessed moderate turnout with high voting percentage of over 75, due to widespread proxy voting.
By and large today’s voting passed off peacefully baring few incidents and reports of malfunctioning of the Electronic Voting Machines (EVMs). Though Election officials have claimed of high voting percentage eye witness accounts reported that most of the voting booths in urban places remained almost empty with high voting percentage due to widespread proxy voting in the midst of webcasting, CCTV and recordings of the proceedings by the Election Commission of India (ECI). The exercise by the ECI has proved futile over the years due to its non-implementation of laid down election rules and procedures.
Voters turnout in most of the polling booths in Kohima remained very low, but voting percentage was high due to massive proxy voting. Sources from other parts of the State also said there was extensive proxy voting, especially in urban centres.
Another reason for poor turnout was due to frustration by voters against inaction by the ECI over the years despite widespread electoral malpractices.
In the State capital some voters were carrying multiple voter slips to indulge in proxy voting.
One of the polling officials said there was a massive proxy voting at his polling booth. .
When contacted people from several places in the State confirmed of similar reports of large-scale proxy voting.
Several complaints have poured in demanding for re-poll but it remains to be seen what decision the ECI would take. There was a report of damage of EVM at Kubza in Mokokchung by supporters of a particular party. Another complaint has also been lodged with the ECI for alleged booth capture by supporters of NDPP in one of the booths in Lerie Kohima.
While no untoward incident was reported in Dimapur, most of the polling stations wore deserted look by noon with only polling personnel and political party workers present.
Even though the voter turnout was less in Dimapur, casting of votes were reported till late afternoon, which indicated proxy voting by people.
However, in some polling stations in Dimapur-I Assembly constituency, the voter turnout was heavy in the morning hours, but slowly dispersed after heavy rain at around 9.30 a.m.
Election Observers deputed to oversee the polling process also commented that the turnout was less in Dimapur. (Page News Service)