Namgay Dema, 80, from Trashi Yangtse was perhaps the oldest and one of the early voters who showed up to cast her postal ballot at the facilitation booth at Lhuentse High School on the first day of the voting that kicked on September 7. Like others, she waited in queue until her turn. However, she was disqualified by the polling officials because she had with her an old Voter Personal Identity Card (VPIC).

She had two options: either to wait until her new VPIC was handed to her over by the election officials or to come back the next day. She chose to wait because all her friends had voted and she did not want to come back to love, alone.

Her friends then suggested her to come back to vote the next day. She was reluctant but has no other option.

She voted the next day after election officials managed a new VPIC for her.

Similarly, a voter had come with an old VPIC at the polling station at Autsho MSS. His new VPIC was reprinted at the station and was allowed to vote.

Among the voters registered with the postal ballot facilitation booth at Lhuentse High School were the employees of the dzongkhag administration, teachers, corporate employees, police personnel and their spouses.

A few found the experience a little inconvenient.

“I thought it was like voting at the polling booth with the inked finger but a polling officer handed me over a pen and a form to tick.  I held pen for the first time and did according to the instruction.  Hope I did it correctly,” Tshering Deki, a wife of a policeman from Mongar said.

Tshering Lhamo, also a wife of a policeman, she was bit more confident because she had gone through a bit of practice before heading into the booth.

Voter turn out at the Lhuentse High School was 672, of which 342 were female and 330 male.

The polling station at Autsho MSS saw 223 of the 237 registered voters come to vote. Of them, 116 were female and 107 were male.

The dzongkhag witnessed voter turnout of 895 out of the 974 registered voters, which is about 92 percent.

Dzongkhag election office deployed five polling officials and three security officials at each station with all lady officials at the station at Lhuentse High School.

Tshering Namgyal | Lhuentse