Aizawl, April 17: An estimated 69.5 per cent of over 19,000 voters exercised their franchise till 3 pm on Saturday for by-election to the Serchhip assembly seat in Mizoram, an official said.
Polling which started at 7 am initially got off to a slow start but picked up around 11 am.
Altogether 19,520 voters, including 10,329 women, are eligible to decide the fate of six candidates, including those of the ruling Mizo National Front (MNF), ZPM and the Congress.
Polling is going on smoothly in all the 29 polling stations, the official said.
Voting will end at 7 pm, he said. Earlier it was scheduled to be held between 7 am and 6 pm.
Some political parties had recently appealed to the Election Commission to extend the duration of the polling period after their request of rescheduling the dates of polling and counting, on account of religious obligation, was rejected by the poll panel.
The by-election has been necessitated after the disqualification of incumbent MLA Lalduhoma, in November 2020 under the anti-defection law.
Lalduhoma is now contesting on a ZPM ticket.
Six candidates are in the fray for the by-election.
The MNF has fielded its vice president and former Lok Sabha member Vanlalzawma, while the Congress has nominated former student leader and party general secretary P C Laltlansanga. - PTI