Polling staff celebrate arrival of a voter at deserted Kishoreganj polling station

The Ashinol Government Primary School polling station was found deserted around 2:30 pm on 5 June, 2024, during the fourth phase of upazila parishad polls.Tafsilul Aziz

The election officials were eagerly waiting for voters in the Ashinol Government Primary School polling station in Bajitpur of Kishoreganj, during the fourth phase of upazila parishad elections on Wednesday.

When a voter snapped the wait and appeared there in the afternoon, it led to a festive atmosphere there, with the election staff erupting into cheers.

Recounting the experience, the voter, Md Ruman, said, “As I entered the polling booth, everyone started to shout, saying - 'Come on! A voter has come.' It felt like they had been waiting for me for quite some time and, therefore, welcomed me this way."

Nadim Miya, the presiding officer of the polling station, revealed that out of the 3,411 registered voters under the polling station, only 600 (17.59 per cent) had cast their votes by 2:30 pm.

A similar trend of low voter turnout persisted in other polling stations, including Sararchar Soudamini Surbala Girls High School, Sararchar Shibnath Bahumukhi High School, Sarishapur Government Primary School, Dighirpar Lower Secondary School, Halimpur Government Primary School, and Purba Patuli Government Primary School.

At the Ashinol Government Primary School, a single voter was seen casting his vote during the visit. However, No untoward incidents were reported until 4:00 pm.

Mohshin Bhuiyan, presiding officer of Halimpur Government Primary School, noted that only 450 (20.99 per cent) out of 1,906 registered voters of the area had cast their votes by 3:00 pm.

Similarly, Dighirpar Lower Secondary School recorded over 400 votes (18.55) out of a total voter count of 2,156 by 3:30 pm.

Kabir Alam Shah, presiding officer of Purba Patuli Government Primary School, reported a voter turnout of 720 (25.26), despite a voter count of 2,850 for the centre.

ATM Farhad Chowdhury, additional deputy commissioner and district returning officer, told Prothom Alo around 4:00 pm that the elections in Bajitpur were conducted peacefully, with no significant complaints received from any polling stations, save for a few isolated incidents.