Over 16 pc votes polled in 8 LS seats of West Bengal till 9 am

Kolkata, May 25 (PTI) West Bengal registered a voter turnout of 16.54 per cent till 9 am in the eight Lok Sabha constituencies that went to polls in the sixth phase on Saturday, an official said.

Polling began at 7 am in Tamluk, Kanthi, Ghatal, Jhargram, Medinipur, Purulia, Bankura and Bishnupur constituencies. It would continue till 6 pm.

Tamluk recorded the highest polling at 19.07 per cent, followed by Bishnupur (18.56 per cent), Ghatal (18.27 per cent), Bankura (17.69 per cent), Jhargram (16.22 per cent), Kanthi (15.45 per cent), Medinipur (14.58 per cent) and Purulia (12.68 per cent), he said.

“Voting has been peaceful so far. There are no reports of any untoward incident from anywhere,” the poll official told PTI.

Till 8.55 am, the election office in West Bengal received 364 complaints, he added.

Altogether 1,45,34,228 voters – 73,63,273 men, 71,70,822 women and 133 belonging to the third-gender – are eligible to exercise their franchise in 15,600 polling stations.

Of the 79 candidates in the fray, Bankura and Jhargram have the highest number of 13 contestants each, followed by Purulia (12) and nine each in Medinipur and Tamluk.

Seven candidates each are contesting in the Bishnupur and Ghatal seats.

Among the notable candidates in fray in this phase are Bengali superstar Dev, who is seeking a third term as TMC MP from Ghatal, former Calcutta High Court judge Abhijit Gangopadhyay, the BJP candidate in Tamluk, Union minister Subhas Sarkar in Bankura, and fashion designer Agnimitra Paul, a BJP legislator, who is pitted against TMC MLA and actor June Malia in Medinipur.

A total of 919 companies of central forces have been deployed along with over 29,000 state police personnel, officials said.

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