Wednesday 22 May 2019

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Politics | Assembly '02

Goa polling tomorrow

 

The Goan voter will gently press the button of the electronic voting machine and elect their MLA, at the tenth Assembly election taking place in Goa tomorrow.

Unlike real silence without rustle of ballot papers and thumping of voting stamps, the situation in the tourist state appears quite tense. Most of the political bigwigs are facing a tough battle ahead.

Over 9.26 lakh voters, spread out at 1135 polling booths in 40 constituencies, will decide the fate of 212 candidates belonging to 12 political parties and independents. Only 20 among them are women. The ruling BJP has no single woman candidate.

It includes 8 former chief ministers, two ex-deputy chief ministers, 32 ex-ministers, 12 ex-MLAs and even one MP Shripad Naik, who resigned as the union minister and is contesting against BJP's former deputy chief minister Ravi Naik, who quit the saffron brigade at last minute and joined the Congress.

With no particular wave indicating clear-cut swing towards any party and silent voting appears to be a dominant trend this time, all normal predictions have gone haywire and several political leaders are found trying their level best to win or retain their seats.

As the uncertain situation has made the whole environment quite tense in the tourist state, the police machinery is all prepared to face any eventuality. 17 companies of the CRPF and the CISF have been deployed, besides the local force.

BJP chief minister Manohar Parrikar has alleged that four truckloads of liquor has been brought into the state from Karnataka, at the behest of the Congress party ruling in the neighbouring state, controlled by the liquor barons there.

Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala, on the other hand, alleges that the BJP is politicising any issue to garner votes. Citing an example, he has strongly objected to the front-page advertisement in the local newspapers, asking for votes to strengthen prime minister's hands to fight the cross-border terrorism.

With charges and counter-charges pouring from the candidates of several parties that liquor, money, clothes and even mobile phones are being distributed to the voters, chief electoral officer Arvind Ray says he has instructed the police and the excise officials to be on the guard.

The election commission expects that the use of EVMs as well as compulsion of producing identity cards at the polling booth will help in controlling bogus voting. The state's 69 per cent voter has already been issued photo I-cards by the EC, while they have also been given 19 different other options to produce their identity.

Following polling, counting of votes will be taken up on 1 June, to be completed by evening as the EVMs make the whole process pretty easy.






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Politics

 
 
 

Assembly '02

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