Tamar by-election counting Thursday; confusion over poll percentage

January 7th, 2009 - 8:01 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata PartyRanchi, Jan 7 (IANS) Counting of the key Jharkhand assembly by-election in Tamar from where Chief Minister Shibu Soren is seeking entry to the state legislature will take place Thursday amid confusion regarding the exact polling percentage, officials said Wednesday. There has been a lot of confusion regarding the exact polling percentage in the by election for which polling took place Jan 5 amid tight security.

After the polling was over the polling officer of Bundu told mediapersons that 58 percent voters had cast their votes.

Ranchi Deputy Commissioner Rajiv Arun Ekka told reporters 60 per cent polling took place. Later the returning officer of Tamar assembly by-election put the poll percentage at 62.8 percent. The deputy returning officer of Ranchi put the polling percentage at around 64 percent.

“The election commission should look into the issue. It is a serious matter. It is the duty of the election commission to ensure that no unfair means are adopted,” senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and former chief minister Arjun Munda said.

The counting will take place at the office of the sub divisional magistrate Bundu from 8 a.m. Thursday.

After polling was over the key candidates including Soren claimed victory in the by-election.

Tamar assembly has a total 158,000 voters who were eligible to cast their votes. There are 15 candidates in the fray. Of the total 247 polling booths, 180 were declared highly sensitive and the rest as sensitive.

Soren’s main rivals are Ramesh Singh Munda’s widow Basundhara Munda of Janata Dal-United (JD-U) and Raja Peter of Jharkhand Party (JP).

The election is crucial for Soren as he has to get elected to the assembly before Feb 27 to fulfil the constitutional obligation of becoming a member of the state legislature within six months of assuming office. He took over as chief minister Aug 27 last year.

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