Punjab by-poll passes off peacefully

June 12th, 2009 - 8:42 pm ICT by IANS  

Jalandhar, June 12 (IANS) Polling in the by-election to the Nurmahal assembly seat in Punjab’s Jalandhar district passed off peacefully Friday, with the voter turnout expected to cross 70 percent, officials said.
“Till 5 p.m. we had registered 67 percent voting but it would easily cross 70 percent mark as voters are still lined up at various polling booths to cast their votes,” a spokesperson of state poll panel told IANS.

More women and youth came out to vote this time, he added.

District police chief R.K. Jaiswal told IANS that polling was peaceful and no cases of booth capturing or any other violent incident had been reported.

The seat was lying vacant since December 2008 since the death of sitting legislator, Gurdeep Singh Bhullar of the Akali Dal. By-elections were scheduled May 28 but postponed to June 12 following the widespread violence in the state, particularly in Jalandhar district, in the aftermath of a bloody clash in a gurdwara in Austrian capital Vienna.

The main contest is between Bhullar’s widow, Rajwinder Kaur of the Akali Dal and Gurbinder Singh Atwal of the Congress.

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