65.07 percent voter turnout was recorded in the polling for the sixth Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC) Leh, which was held on Thursday to elect 26 new councilors for LAHDC.
This is the first election after centre granted union territory status to Ladakh.
The polling started at 8 am as voters queued to cast their votes at the polling stations in Leh and surrounding villages. EVM’s were for the first time used in the LAHDC-Leh elections and the polling ended at 4 pm.
The polling saw enthusiastic participation of people with large number of women and youth being witnessed at most of the polling booths.
Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the administration had made elaborated arrangements for polling staff as well as the voters to mitigate the spread of coronavirus.
During the entire polling process the polling staff as well as the voters were seen adhering to the COVID19 standard operation procedure (SOP) like maintaining social distancing, wearing of face masks and use of hand sanitizers before and after casting their votes.
Commissioner Secretary Ladakh Ravinder Kumar along with the Deputy commissioner Leh, Sachin Kumar Vaishya who is also the district election authority along with the superintendent of police Leh Rajiv Pandey visited several areas and inspected the polling stations to check the smooth conduct of the polling.
Speaking to Greater Kashmir, the Deputy Commissioner Leh Sachin Kumar Vaishya said that the voter turnout at the end of polling day was 65.07 percent. He however said that the percentage for the polling was tentative and is expected to rise as certain polling stations are yet to submit exact figure.
As per the official figures available with the Greater Kashmir, highest polling was recorded at 19 SkuMurkha polling station where around 83% polling was recorded followed by 76% in polling station 19 Lingshet.
The lowest voting was recorded in 17 Lower Leh polling station where only 48% votes were cast.
In polling station 13 Martselang which is the native village of Member of Parliament Ladakh Jamiang Tsering Namgyal, a polling percentage of 64% was recorded.
94 candidates are in fray for the 26 council constituencies of LAHDC-Leh including 23 each from BJP and Congress, 19 from Aam Aadmi Party and 23 independent candidates.
The counting of votes is scheduled for October 26 which will decide the fate of 94 candidates.