Tripura recorded a high turnout of 55%, Assam 37% and Sikkim 30% till midday for five Lok Sabha seats in eastern India going which went to polls in the fourth phase of Lok Sabha election today.
Polling was also held in 32 Assembly constituencies in Sikkim.
In Tripura, tribals, forming the majority of the electorate in the lone East Tripura (ST), were seen waiting to cast their votes in colourful traditional dresses. Women tribal voters outnumbered men in the polling booths in rural and hilly areas of the state. There were 12 candidates in the fray including CPI(M)'s Jitendra Chowdhury, who is the state industries minister, Congress' Sachitra Debbarma, a prominent educationist, BJP's Parkshit Debbarma, an ex-armyman, and Trinamool Congress leader Bhriguram Reang.
The CPI(M) had won the seat 11 out of 15 times between 1952 and 2009 and did it consecutively since 1996.
In the three LS seats in Assam, Karimganj (SC) recorded the highest of 40% polling, Silchar 35% and Autonomous District (ST) comprising Karbi Anglong and Dima Hasao districts 36%, election office sources said.
EVM malfunction was reported from the Autonomous District and Karimganj constituencies but they were replaced and voting continued uninterrupted, the sources said.
Long queues of voters, including women and young people, were seen an hour before polling began at 7:00 am. Of the 37 contestants in the fray, prominent ones were sitting Congress MPs of Karimganj and Autonomous Districts Lalit Mohan Suklabaidya and Biren Singh Ingti respectively, Silchar's sitting BJP MP and former union minister Kabindra Purukayastha besides Congress MLA from Silchar Sushmita Dev, daughter of former union minister Santosh Mohan Dev.