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Civic Polls : 56% voting recorded till 3 p.m

Civic Polls : 56% voting recorded till 3 p.m

Thiruvananthapuram: An average 56 per cent voter turnout was recorded till 3 p.m in the second phase of local body polls in Kerala in seven districts Thursday, even as malfunctioning of EVMs affected voting in certain areas.

In northern Malappuram district, voting, which commenced at 7 AM, was affected in over 250 booths due to faulty electronic voting machines.

While the highest voting percentage registered was from Alappuzha district, Pathnamthitta recorded the lowest in the first five hours of polling.

A total of 44,388 candidates are in the fray for 12,651 seats in Pathanamthitta, Alappuzha, Kottayam, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad and Malappuram.

Two corporations -- Kochi and Thrissur and 55 muncipalities, 576 gram panchayats, 89 block panchayats and seven district panchayats are among the local bodies where second phase polling is being held.

The first phase of the polls was held on November 2 in Kasargod, Kozhikode, Kannur, Idukki, Kollam, Wayanad and Thiruvananthapuram.

Counting of votes will be held on November 7.

Chief Minister Oommen Chandy told reporters after casting his vote at Puthupally panchayat in Kottayam district that he had faith in the unity of UDF and it will reflect in the election results.

Opposition leader V S Achuthanandan expressed confidence that LDF will win with a huge margin.

In a booth at Wellington island in Ernakulam district, voters had to wade through knee deep water to exercise their franchise.

Polling officials are also sitting in the booth surrounded by water which entered it following heavy rains last night.

Efforts are being made to pump out the water.

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