Madhya Pradesh records over 20 percent voting by 11 a.m. (Second Lead)April 23rd, 2009 - 3:15 pm ICT by IANS
Bhopal, April 23 (IANS) Over 20 percent voting was recorded by 11 a.m. for 13 of Madhya Pradesh’s 29 parliamentary seats where polling was being held Thursday amid tight security in the first of the state’s two phase Lok Sabha elections, officials said.
According to officials, 20.45 percent of the votes had been cast in the first four hours.
Polling was so far peaceful and no untoward incident was reported, state chief electoral officer (CEO) J.S. Mathur said.
There were complaints of malfunctioning electronic voting machines (EVMs) from three places which were rectified immediately, he added.
Polling began at 7 a.m. across the state where 17,178,000 people, including 8,108,000 women, are eligible to exercise their franchise, officials said.
The fate of 198 candidates, including nine women, was being decided in Khajuraho, Satna, Rewa, Sidhi, Jabalpur, Balaghat, Chhindwara, Hoshangabad, Vidisha, Bhopal, Betul, Shahdol and Mandla constituencies. The last three seats are reserved for Scheduled Tribes (ST).
Over 97,000 election officials have been positioned at 21,834 voting stations in areas going to the polls in the first phase.
The tribal dominated Mandla constituency has the highest number of polling stations at 2,255 while Satna has the lowest at 1,433.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) have fielded their candidates in all 13 constituencies, while the Congress and Samajwadi Party have candidates in 12 each.
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