Assam set for first-phase polls

GUWAHATI, April 3: Assam is ready for the first-phase Assembly elections to 62 constituencies on Monday. A total of 485 candidates will seek their electoral fortune in the first phase of voting in upper Assam, Barak Valley, NC Hills, Karbi Anglong and northern Assam covering 13 districts.
The polling will start at 7 am and closeat 3 pm. Altogether 85,09,010 voters, including 43,91,889 males and 41,17,121 females, will exercise their franchise in the first-phase Assembly polls. Electronic voting machines (EVMs) will be used in the elections. Video and still cameras have been installed in 1,350 of the 11,264 polling stations set up for the first-phase elections.
The Election Commission has completed all preparations for the elections. Security has been tightenedand additional forces deployed for peaceful voting at 11,264 polling booths. All the polling personnel have already reached their respective polling stations.
Among the Congress candidates whose fate will be decided in the first-phase Assembly polls are Chief MinisterTarun Gogoi (Titabor), ministers Pradyut Bordoloi (Margherita), Prithibi Majhi (Lahowal), Pranab Gogoi (Sivasagar), Bharat Chandra Narah (Dhakuakhana), Nurjamal Sarkar (Biswanath Chariali), Ajanta Neog (Golaghat), Gautam Roy (Katlisara) and Dinesh Prasad Goala (Lakshipur), and former minister Anjan Dutta (Amguri).
The Opposition AGP candidates includeJagadish Bhuyan (Sadiya), Hitendranath Goswami (Jorhat), Atul Bora (Bokakhat), Padma Hazarika (Sootia), Utpal Dutta (Lakhimpur), Pradip Hazarika (Amguri), Amiyo Bora (Golaghat), Kesaram Bora (Bihpuria), Anup Phukan (Tingkhong), Sushila Hazarika (Dergaon) and Brindabon Goswami (Tezpur).
The elections will also decide the fate of BJP's Ranjit Dutta (Bihali) and Prasanta Phukan (Dibrugarh), and CPI's Drupad Borgohain (Nazira).
Of the 62 Assembly constituencies going to the first-phase elections, Jonai is the biggest in terms of voters with 2,32,669 people having the voting rights. Thowra with 94,738 voters is the smallest constituency. Karimganj South constituency has the highest number of candidates –25. Baithalangso constituency has the lowest number of poll contestants – 3.
Out of the 11,264 polling stations, 2,093 have been identified as "hyper-sensitive", 2,985 as "sensitive" and 6,186 as "comparatively safe". (SentinelAssam)

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