New Delhi: The first phase of voting for West Bengal and Assam assembly elections 2021 starts today. The stage is all set for the polls, which will begin at 7 am and end at 6 pm, with the timing extended by an hour to ensure that COVID protocols are maintained.
In West Bengal, the first phase of polling will decide the electoral fate of 191 candidates including 21 women. Thirty seats are up for election in the first round, including all of Purulia and Jhargram’s constituencies, as well as those from Bankura, Purba Medinipur, and Paschim Medinipur. For West Bengal polls a total of 7.32 crore electors are registered to vote in the state’s 1,01,916 polling booths.
In West Bengal’s Purulia, sitting MLA of Congress Sudip Mukherjee who joined the BJP recently is contesting. In the last assembly election, Mukherjee had defeated Jyoti Prasad Singh Deo of TMC. In the 2021 polls, Congress has fielded Partha Pratim Banerjee and TMC has fielded Sujoy Banerjee for Purulia.
In Assam, a total of 264 candidates are in the fray from 47 seats, out of which 42 seats are from 11 districts of Upper Assam and northern Assam region and five seats are from central Assam’s Nagaon district going to polls in the first phase. As per data in the State Election Commission, there are a total 81,09,815 registered voters in the first phase polls in Assam who will vote in the state’s 11,537 polling stations.
In Assam, top leaders including Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, Asom Gana Parishad (AGP) president Atul Bora, Assam Congress chief Ripun Bora and several ministers will be in the fray today. Sonowal is seeking re-election from Majuli, a seat he wrested from Congress’ Rajib Lochan Pegu in the 2016 Assembly elections.
Identification of Voters at Polling Stations:
- MNREGA Job Card
- Passbooks with photograph issued by Bank/Post Office
- Health Insurance Smart Card issued under the scheme of Ministry of
- Driving License
- PAN Card
- Smart Card issued by RGI under NPR
- Indian Passport
- Pension document with photograph
- Service Identity Cards with photograph issued to employees by
- Central/State Govt./PSUs/Public Limited Companies, and
- Official identity cards issued to MPs/MLAs/MLCs
Meanwhile, the assembly elections in West Bengal are scheduled to be held in eight phases. Polling in the remaining seven phases will take place on April 1 (30 seats), April 6 (31 seats), April 10 (44 seats), April 17 (45 seats), April 22 (43 seats), April 26 (36 seat) and April 29 (35 seats). Results will be declared on May 2.
In Assam, elections will be held in three phases. The date of the remaining two polls is April 1 and April 6. 39 constituencies in 13 districts will go to the polls in the second phase and 41 constituencies in 12 districts will go to the polls in the third phase.