Goa recorded 15 per cent voting in the first two hours, since polling began at 7 a.m., on Saturday for the state’s 40 assembly seats, election officials said.
“North Goa district experienced 16 per cent voting and South Goa district polled 14 per cent. Overall voting is 15 per cent,” Chief Electoral Officer Kunal told the media here.
No untoward situation has been reported so far.
However, polling at one booth in Cumbharjua constituency was delayed due to EVM machine malfunction but eventually began at 7.45 a.m, Kunal added.
Among the early voters on Saturday were Defence Minister and former Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar who cast his ballot in Panaji, while Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar voted in his coastal constituency of Mandrem, minutes after the polling started.
Speaking to IANS after casting his ballot, Parsekar expressed confidence that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) would come to power, when the results are announced on March 11.
“There is no doubt about victory. What matters is what we do for Goa after March 11,” Parsekar said.
Former Goa Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief Subhash Velingkar also cast his ballot in Panaji.
Velingkar said that the alliance between the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, Goa Suraksha Manch and Shiv Sena would win 22 seats.
“The BJP government has to go and will go. The RSS cadre in Goa will not vote for them. The Goa BJP and Parrikar are responsible for the maladies the state is suffering,” Velingkar said.
Aam Aadmi Party(AAP) chief ministerial candidate Elvis Gomes also cast his ballot.
A total of 251 candidates are contesting the Saturday polls, the main parties in the fray being the ruling BJP, Indian National Congress, AAP, Nationalist Congress Party, Shiv Sena, Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, Goa Suraksha Manch, among others.
Over 8,000 additional paramilitary personnel, in addition to the state police, have been despatched to the 1,642 polling stations across the state and other strategic locations to maintain law and order.
Goa has 11.08 lakh registered voters, who are entitled to exercise their franchise.
Polling will end at 5 p.m.
The 2012 state assembly polls recorded a highest ever voting percentage in the state last year at 82.2 per cent.