Uttarakhand, which will go for a single-phase polling on Thursday, has 11 polling booths which voters can reach only after traversing a distance 15 to 20 km on foot, Chief Electoral Officer Saujanya said on Tuesday. Among these, four are in the Tehri district followed by three in Pithoragarh, two in Chamoli and one each in Rudraprayag and Uttarkashi. Polling will be held on Haridwar, Tehri Garhwal, Almora, Garhwal and Nainital-Udham Singh Nagar seats in the first phase.
Government Primary School, Dumak in Chamoli district has the farthest located polling booth in the state, which is 20 km from the nearest road, the official said. The polling station set up at Panchayat Ghar in Ghudsal village of Tehri district is 19 km from the road, whereas Kalkoth polling station in Badrinath area of Chamoli district, Pilang in Gangotri area of Uttarkashi and Kanar polling stations in Pithoragarh are 18 km from the nearest road, she said.
The BJP and the Congress are the two principal parties in Uttarakhand with the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) as a third force in the state.The BJP had won 57 of the 70 seats in the state Assembly polls in 2017, leaving Congress with only 11 seats. The latter had won all five Uttarakhand Lok Sabha seats in 2009 but had faced a debacle in 2014 losing them all to the BJP. The BJP received 24,29,698 votes with a whopping vote share of 55.93 per cent. The Congress drew a blank in the yet another state and received 14,94,440 votes with a vote share of 34.40 per cent. The BSP got the vote share of around 5 per cent in the elections. BJP's Mala Rajya Laxmi Shah defeated Congress candidate Saket Bahuguna, son of Vijay Bahuguna, by over 1,90,000 votes in Tehri Garhwal constituency. In Garhwal constituency, Bhuwan Chandra Khanduri defeated Congress leader Harak Singh Rawat by over 1,80,000 votes.