STAFF Reporter GUWAHATI, July 17 - Voting for the presidential polls passed off smoothly at the Assam Legislative Assembly today. NDA nominee Ram Nath Kovind and Opposition-backed candidate Meira Kumar are locked in a direct contest for the post of President of India.
State BJP president Ranjit Kumar Dass casting his vote for the presidential poll in the Central Hall of the Assam Legislative Assembly, in Guwahati on Monday. – UB Photos
A total of 124 MLAs and three MPs exercised their franchise at the central hall of the Assam Legislative Assembly.
Two other MLAs – Tarun Gogoi and Kamal Shing Narzary – had earlier informed the election authorities that they will cast their votes in New Delhi.
All three AIUDF MPs in the Lok Sabha – Badruddin Ajmal, Sirajuddin Ajmal and Radheshyam Biswas – cast their votes at the central hall of the Assembly here.
Principal Secretary of the Assam Legislative Assembly Mrigendra Kumar Deka said that voting started at 10 am.
All the 124 MLAs and three MPs who had registered to vote here had exercised their franchise even before 2 pm.
“However, as per the rules, we kept the voting centre open till the stipulated time of 5 pm, after which the ballot box was sealed and put in the strong room. Tomorrow, the ballot box will be taken to New Delhi,” Deka said.
He said there was only a single ballot box.
“The voting exercise was completed without any glitch or hassles,” Deka said.
Joint Secretary in the Union Rural Development Ministry Prabhat Kumar Sarangi was the central observer deputed for the polling here.
BPF MLA from Kalaigaon Maheswar Boro was the first one to cast his vote here today, while AGP MLA and former Chief Minister PK Mahanta was the last one to exercise his franchise.
Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal cast his vote at around 10.20 am.
The 124 MLAs used pink-coloured ballot papers, while the three MPs were given green-coloured ballot papers.
The vote value of an MLA from Assam is 116. All MPs have a similar vote value of 708.
There are 126 MLAs in the Assam Legislative Assembly. There are also 14 Lok Sabha MPs and seven Rajya Sabha MPs from the State.
Meanwhile, Congress MLA Rupjyoti Kurmi created some sensation today when he claimed that a few legislators from the NDA partners may cast their votes in favour of Meira Kumar.