Chencho Dema

Punakha —The three-day special early voting period for the general round of elections in Gasa, Punakha, and Wangdue Phodrang that concluded yesterday saw more voters with disabilities than the primary round.

In the primary round, Punakha had 36 PWDs which increased to 54 in the general round. Gasa had 10 in the primary round and 14 in the general round while Wangdue had 142 which increased to 206 for the general round.  

 According to election officials, the rise can be attributed to the fact that a large number of people were receiving treatment and were unaware of the registration dates, and that no one was available at home to help them register.

In a significant move made by the Election Commission of Bhutan (ECB), PWDs  who are unable to reach polling places can now cast special early ballots and the facility is designed to address mainly the needs of persons with disabilities who face challenges in travelling to traditional polling stations.

The service is not limited to those with disabilities; it also includes people with chronic illnesses, bedridden people, and senior citizens who may have mobility issues.



For the general round, of 13 PWDs voters had cast ballots and one from Thimphu, the dzongkhag election authority reported that 14 PWDs from Khamaed-Lunana are registered voters, but none from Khatoed-Laya.

During the primary round there were 10 PWDs registered of which five each were from each constituency. 



From 19 PWDs registered in Kabji-Talo in the primary round the figures increased to 22.

In the Lingmukha-Toedwang constituency there were 32 PWDs registered. 

The voter turnout in the two consituecies was 48. 


Wangdue Phodrang

In Wangdue, 206 PWDs registered to vote in the general election, as opposed to 142 PWDs from the primary round, of which the voter turnout was 192. From Nyisho-Saephu 62 and 130 from Athang-Thedtsho casted their votes. 

In Athang-Thedtsho, there were 138 PWDs registered, including 66 females.  

There were 68 PWDs in Nyisho-Saephu which includes 28 men and 40 women. In contrast, 71 PWDs were registered in the primary round.