Chandigarh, May 19, 2019 - Violence marred the polling at most places in Punjab which went to polls for all the 13 Lok Sabha seats of the state in the seventh and final phase of general elections on Sunday.
Approximately 65 to 70 per cent of the 2.07 crore electorates used their right to vote and sealed the fate of 278 candidates, including 24 women, in all 13 parliamentary constituencies of Punjab till 1800 hrs amid reports of glitches in the EVMs at Gurdaspur, Faridkot, Sangrur, Abohar and Bathinda due to which, polling was delayed by 15 minutes to half an hour.
However, polling percentage could increase further in Punjab and Chandigarh, as voters were still in the queue, when it ended.
Polling in 13 parliamentary constituencies of Punjab and also for lone Chandigarh Lok Sabha seat began at 0700 hrs and concluded at 1800 hrs on Sunday.
A Congress worker identified as Bunty was allegedly killed by an Akali Dal supporter in Sarli village falling in Khadoor Sahib Lok Sabha constituency while he was standing outside a booth. However, while confirming the incident, SSP Kuldeep Singh Chahal said that the incident seems to be a case of personal rivalry and police had started its investigations.
Supporters of both Congress and SAD clashed with each other in the villages of Jalandhar, Amritsar, Ferozepur, Sangrur, Bathinda, Hoshiarpur and Faridkot leaving more than two dozen workers of both parties injured who have been admitted to hospitals.
In Bathinda, eight persons were injured when SAD workers clashed with Congress workers. It is said that Akali worker Jalor Singh indulged in heating arguments with Congress workers which led to skirmishes and left eight persons injured.
In Faridkot, Congress workers attacked the vehicle of former SAD minister Sikander Singh Maluka and damaged it. It is said that Maluka had a narrow escape of the attack.
In Jalandhar, Congress and BSP workers clashed at a booth in Kingra village under Bhogpur block but the situation was brought under control soon after the security forces rushed to the site. Similarly in Ladoi village of Bhogpur witnessed violence between Congress and SAD workers causing damage to the booth of one party.
In Gurdaspur, SAD workers clashed with Congress workers in Kot Mohan village leaving four persons injured.
The Election Commission deployed over 1.25 lakh employees and over one lakh police officers for free and fair polling in the state. As many as 42,689 ballot units and 28,703 VVPAT were be used in the election.
Though there is multi-cornered contest between the Congress, SAD-BJP alliance, AAP and Punjab Democratic Front (PDA), consisting of the Bahujan Samaj Party, Left parties, Punjab Ekta Party and Lok Insaaf Party, the main electoral battle is between the Congress and the SAD-BJP alliance, in most of the seats.