Imphal, Sept 24 (ANI): The recently held Panchayat elections in Manipur saw heavy turnout of voters, who braved the heat to exercise their franchise in the four valley districts of the state.
The voters made a beeline for 1516 polling stations to choose 60 Zila Parishad members, 161 pradhans and 1,515 gram panchayat members.
In Imphal East and Bishnupur, more than 80 percent electorates exercised their vote while in Imphal West, nearly 90 percent electorate voted.
The huge turnout reflected the awareness among people about the importance of the Panchayats in the smooth functioning of rural areas.
Though polling was scheduled to begin at 8 a.m., hundreds of voters queued outside the polling booths much earlier.
Interacting with media, Lata Devi, one of the voters said that the people want a peaceful and progressive society.
"We want to vote peacefully and to elect a candidate of our choice who can serve the people. We want him to bring changes for good and that is the reason I came to vote," she said.
The government had provided a robust security cover to ensure free and fair election.
More than 5000 security personnel were deployed during the voting and several polling stations were declared hyper sensitive, where extra security was provided.
Miscreants in the past had tried to disrupt the election campaign by lobbing grenades and attacking people.
Surjalata Devi, one of the candidates and a Panchayat member, said, "I want to serve my people and bring development in my area. I have come out to contest the elections with an aim to bring about change for better."
Overall 231 candidates contested for the 60 Zilla Parishad seats, 595 candidates for 161 seats for Pradhans and 3794 candidates were in the fray for 1514 seats for the Gram Panchayats. (ANI)