Bhubaneswar, April 18 (IANS) The second phase of polling in five Lok Sabha and 35 Assembly constituencies in Odisha recorded 64 per cent voter turnout on Thursday, said state’s Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Surendra Kumar.
“Voting by nearly 64 per cent of total 76.93 lakh electorate was recorded by 5 p.m. This is a tentative figure and this is very likely to change after compilation of information from fields. The voters, who are in the queue, are still voting in some areas,” said Kumar.
Elections were held for Bargarh, Sundargarh, Bolangir, Kandhamal and Aska Lok Sabha seats and 35 Assembly seats under them.
Kumar said he has recommended fresh polling in six booths due to human error during the replacement of Voter Verifiable Paper Audit Trail (VVPAT) machines.
Re-polling will take place at two booths — booth number 129 in Bonai and 213 in Sundergarh will. Besides, the Commission has also recommended repolling in booth number 68 in Bargarh, 235 in Atabira, and 210 and 222 in Daspalla.
The CEO said: “The EVMs and VVPATs have been cross-paired in these polling stations. The officials had apparently connected EVMs meant for Lok Sabha to Assembly polls and the vice versa. Action will be taken against the officials responsible for the error.”
Electorate in several villages boycotted the polls protesting against the state administration for not meeting their demands to carry out development in their areas.
The voters sealed the fate of 279 candidates including 35 Lok Sabha and 244 for Assembly candidates in the second phase.
Several heavyweights including Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik and Union Minister Jual Oram, Prasanna Acharya, Achyuta Samanta, Kalikesh Narayan Singhdeo, Suresh Pujari and Sangeeta Singhdeo were in fray in the second phase.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is contesting from two Assembly seats — Hinjili and Bijepur.
Out of the total electorate of 76,93,123, 39.45 lakh male, 37.47 lakh female and 605 others were eligible to cast their votes.
During the polling, a 95-year-old man identified as Natabar Behera died while standing in the queue at a booth in Kansamari village under Sanakhemundi Assembly segment.
A report from Aska Lok Sabha constituency said that BJP candidate Nilamani Bisoi damaged an EVM in booth number 182 of Sorada Assembly constituency.