About 25 pc polling until noon in Chhattisgarh

Raipur, Nov 17 (UNI) An estimated 25 per cent voting was recorded until noon on Friday in Chhattisgarh where exercise of franchise is underway amid heavy security arrangements across 70 Assembly constituencies in the second and final phase of polling.

Official sources provided the district-wise break-up as Korba 26 percent, Koriya 25, Gariaband 24, Gaurela-Pendra-Marwahi (a three-part name of a single district) 32, Jashpur 28, Janjgir-Champa 24, Durg 25, Dhamtari 22, Balrampur 28, Balodabazar-Bhatapara 27, Balod 28, Bilaspur 22, Bemetara 26, Manendragarh-Chirmiri-Bharatpur 24, Mahasamund 26, Mungeli 28, Raigarh 27, Raipur 26, Sakti 21, Surguja 25, Sarangarh 24 and Surajpur 28.

The polling centres number 18,833 and the timings are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. barring nine places in Leftwing extremism-affected Bindranawagarh constituency where the timings are 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Webcasting has been arranged at 9,424 centres and videography at hypersensitive ones.

The 1,63,14,479-strong electorate includes 81,72,171 women and 684 of the third gender. The fortunes of 958 candidates including 130 women and one of the third gender are being sealed in electronic voting machines.

The prominent nominees include Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel (Patan), his deputy Tribhuvaneshwar Saran Singh Deo (Ambikapur), Vidhan Sabha Speaker Charan Das Mahant (Sakti), BJP state President Arun Sao (Lormi), Janata Congress head Renu Jogi (Kota) and Union Minister of State for Tribal Affairs Renuka Singh Saruta (Bharatpur-Sonhat).

Counting is slated for December 3.

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