Orissa voter turnout pegged at 65.9 percent

April 17th, 2009 - 9:23 pm ICT by IANS  

Bhubaneswar, April 17 (IANS) At least 65.9 percent voting was recorded in the first phase of Lok Sabha and assembly elections in Orissa Thursday, an official statement said Friday after compiling data from all polling centres.
The voter turnout was the highest in the district of Angul at 72.8 percent, and the lowest was recorded in Malkangiri district - considered a Maoist stronghold, the office of the chief electoral officer said in its release.

The election was held Thursday for 10 Lok Sabha seats, with 72 candidates in the fray, and 70 assembly constituencies, with 599 contestants.

The districts of Bargarh, Bolangir, Boudh, Deogarh, Gajapati, Ganjam, Jharsuguda, Kalahandi and Koraput, recorded respectively 70.0, 68.9, 73.2, 71.1, 65.8, 55.7, 68.5, 69.4 and 63.1 per cent polling.

Kandhamal district, where 38 people were killed last year in communal violence, has recorded 65.7 percent voter turnout, said the release.

Besides, the districts of Nabrangpur, Nayagarh, Nuapada, Rayagada, Sambalpur, Sonepur and Sundergarh recorded a voting of 71.2, 64.4, 68.0, 64.5, 64.8, 71.9, 61.3 per cent, the release said.

Prominent candidates in the first phase included Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik from the Hinjili assembly constituency and central minister and Congress leader Chandrasekhar Sahu from the Berhampur Lok Sabha constituency.

Former chief minister Giridhar Gomang contested from Koraput and former central minister Jual Oram from the Sundergarh Lok Sabha constituency.

The second phase of polling will be held in the state April 23.

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