Lok Sabha polls: Nearly 61 per cent voter turnout in phase 2 of polls till 7 pm

Voter turnout of 60.96 per cent was recorded till 7 pm in phase two of the Lok Sabha elections held on Friday across 88 constituencies spread in 13 states, the Election Commission said.

The poll panel described the voting as “peaceful”.

In the second phase of Lok Sabha elections of 2019 held in 95 constituencies across 13 states, the turnout was much higher at 67.6 per cent.

Heat wave is believed to have contributed towards several voters not turning up at polling stations in both the phases.

In the first phase, the turnout was 65.5 per cent compared to 69.43 per cent in phase one of the 2019 parliamentary polls. Some of the constituencies were different then and the total number of seats which went to poll were 91.

The EC said polling is now complete in 14 states and Union territories.

The polling time was extended till 6 pm in many polling stations in Banka, Madhepura, Khagaria and Munger constituencies in Bihar to facilitate the voters in hot weather conditions. Special arrangements were made to combat the heat, including provision of `shamiyana`, drinking water, medical kits and fans for the convenience of the voters.

The usual polling time is 7 am to 6 pm but it varies depending on factors such as terrain, time of sunset and security situation.

In phase two, the EC said, voters from 46 villages in Bastar and Kanker constituencies in Chhattisgarh cast their vote in a polling booth set up in their own village for the first time in a Lok Sabha election.

“Thus, including phase one, overall, 102 new polling stations were set up for the first time in these constituencies for convenience of villagers,” EC said.

Cricketing icons Anil Kumble, Rahul Dravid and Javagal Srinath were seen voting at different polling stations in Bengaluru. Striking a pose with their inked fingers, they carried the message of importance of participation in the electoral process to the youth, the EC said.

In the second phase, over 15.88 crore voters, including 8.08 crore male, 7.8 crore female and 5,929 third gender were eligible to vote.

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