Agartala, Apr 11 : Technical snag in EVM has got delayed polling more than an hour in VIP colony here that disappointed a number of top officials who left the booth without casting vote in the first hour after long waiting in the queue. According to report, state election commissioner G K Rao, State Human Rights Commission member Dr R P Meena, Director IT Salil Das and many other top officials returned back without pressing EVM button in the morning at Acharya Prafulla Chandra Smiriti Vidyalaya at Kunjaban.
The polling party as well as the voters have been in the queue since early morning but the EVM was not responding when a presiding officer attempted for mock polling ahead of schedule beginning of the election. The matter was reported to sector officer and after half an hour another EVM was brought but it was also not functioning. Meantime, the technical team got a call from another polling booth nearby with the same complaint, they left it unresolved and moved there. By that time, more than a hundred voters were waiting in the queue and left the booths disheartened after an hour.
“We have preferred to cast the vote after morning walk before there is a crowd but this time I could not able to cast the vote because of inordinate delay in resolving the problem of EVM. I get a chance, I shall come later of the day to vote,” said a lady officer who was also returned without pressing EVM in the polling station. The similar type of problem in EVMs has been received from several other polling stations of Agartala in the first hour but the election administration in most of the cases did not respond timely manner, which long the queue and annoyed the voters.
According to the report, in the first hour around 11 per cent vote in Tripura West constituency was reported but no report of the untoward incident from anywhere. The polling began at 7am and will continue till 5pm. A total of 13, 47,377 voters including 6, 65,248 female and seven third genders have been exercising their franchise to decide the fate of 13 candidates across 1679 polling stations. Polling is underway smoothly in 30 booths in different locations of the constituency totally managed by women polling staff and security personnel. The CPI (M) candidate Shankar Prasad Datta and Congress candidate Subal Bhowmik cast their votes in the first hour at Hindi Higher Secondary School and Budhjung Boys Higher Secondary School of the city respectively.
BJP candidate Pratima Bhowmik left for Western town Sonamura to cast her vote and Chief Minister Biplab Kumar Deb rushed to Udaipur to exercise his franchise there. The Congress president and royal scion Pradyot Kishore Debbarman and her elder sister – the party candidate for East Tripura Pragya Debbarman and IPFT East Tripura candidate and Revenue Minister N C Debbaram cast their votes in place compound and Krishnanagar of the city respectively in the first hour of voting. (UNI)