BONGAIGAON, Dec 10 - Barring some sporadic incidents, polling for the second phase of the Bodoland Territorial Council (BTC) was by and large peaceful in all the seven council seats in Chirang district with a voter turnout of 73 per cent till 3-30 pm, said Chirang district Deputy Commissioner Gautam Talukdar.
A mob had entered a polling station at Duttapur under Chirang seat in Chirang district and assaulted a presiding officer who had allegedly convinced a blind and infirm voter to cast his ballot in support of the Bodoland People�s Front (BPF). To disperse the mob and normalise the situation, security forces had fired one round of bullets in the air and after a brief interval, polling had resumed in the said polling station.
�The presiding officer was helping a blind and aged voter to choose the symbol of his favourite party, but a rumour spread that the presiding officer had insisted the voter to cast his ballot in support of the BPF party and this had created a tense situation which was controlled within 10 to 15 minutes before the polling was resumed,� the Deputy Commissioner said adding that no arrest has been made in this connection.
On the other hand, a clash between the supporters of BPF and United People�s Party Liberal (UPPL) took place at a polling station at Khungring Lower Primary School under Chirang Duar seat this afternoon after an allegation of poll rigging in favour of the BPF arose against the Booth Level Officer (BLO) of the polling station.
A BPF party worker had allegedly taken away the slips of UPPL voters because of which they could not cast their votes as already some fake voters had cast their votes on their behalf at the polling station.
When Ranjit Basumatary, the UPPL contender from the seat had arrived at the polling station to verify the allegation of rigging, a group of youths belonging to his rival faction attacked his vehicle. The miscreants had damaged another two vehicles of UPPL�s women leaders.
�Since the BPF nominee and former Deputy Chief of BTC, Kampa Borgoyari contesting in the seat has already guessed his defeat, his party workers have become frustrated and indulged in violence,� said UPPL candidate Ranjit Basumatary.
�People of BTC have realised that only the leadership of BPF Chief Hagrama Mahilary can bring peace to the region, hence the voters of this region have come out freely to support the BPF,� Minister Chandan Brahma said after casting his ballot at Nilibari Lower Primary School at Nilibari under Kajalgaon council seat this morning.