Counting begins for Assam assembly polls amid strict COVID-19 protocols

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Guwahati: Counting of votes got underway on Sunday morning for the Assam assembly elections, with most exit polls predicting a victory for the BJP-led alliance for the second time in a row.

The electoral fate of 946 candidates including 74 women, who contested the three-phase polls for the 126-member assembly, will be decided during the exercise.

Counting started at 8 am in 331 designated halls where the Election Commission has put in place various measures to ensure strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols, as the state has witnessed a surge in cases.

A three-tier security apparatus has also been installed outside the counting centres.

Prominent contestants include Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal, senior minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, BJP state president Ranjeet Kumar Dass, Asom Gana Parishad chief Atul Bora, and senior Congress leaders Pradyut Bordoloi and Debabrata Saikia.

Over 82 per cent of the 2.33 crore voters have exercised their franchise during the polling held on March 27, April 1 and April 6.

Most exit polls have given a clear edge to the BJP, which is contesting the elections in alliance with the AGP and the United Peoples' Party Liberal. The Congress, on the other hand, formed a 'Grand Alliance' with the All India United Democratic Front and several other parties. PTI

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