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Stage set for Sikkim Assembly poll on Thursday

 The polling will be held from 7 am to 5 pm at 567 polling stations spread over four districts in Sikkim.

Stage set for Sikkim Assembly poll on Thursday

The voting for the 32 Assembly seats in Sikkim will take place on Thursday. A total of 150 candidates are in the fray. The polling will be held from 7 am to 5 pm at 567 polling stations spread over four districts in Sikkim.

The prominent candidates include Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) president and chief minister Pawan Kumar Chamling, who is seeking a record eighth successive term as an MLA and is contesting from two assembly seats - Poklok-Kamrang and Namchi-Singhithang.

Hamro Sikkim Party (HSP) working president and former footballer Bhaichung Bhutia has entered into the fray from two assembly seats as well, including Gangtok, reserved seat for the indigenous Bhutia-Lepcha communities.

There are a total 4,32,306 voters comprising of 2,20,305 male and 2,12,001 female. Of the total voters in Sikkim, 30,480 are first-time voters, while 2,042 voters have registered themselves as the People with Disabilities (PWD) Sikkim's Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) Ravindra Telang told reporters.

Of the 567 polling stations, 120 have been identified as critical polling stations and will be manned by the Centre Para Military forces to supervise security arrangements during the day-long polling. A total of 3,600 polling personnel and 4,000 security men, including 10 companies of SSB, have been deployed for the polling. As many as 39 of 567 polling station will be manned by all-women personnel.

The counting of votes will take place on May 23.