Punakha opted for a change. The people of the two constituencies – Lingmukha-Toedwang and Kabisa-Talo chose Druk Nyamrup Tshogpa over Druk Phuensum Tshogpa yesterday in the general election.

Just like in the primary round, the voters of Lingmukha-Toedwang constituency in Punakha chose DNT’s Tandi Dorji over DPT’s Sonam Wangyel Wang.

Tandi Dorji, one of the founders of DNT, secured 3,154 votes, of which 1,030 were postal votes. Sonam Wangyel Wang secured 2,082 votes, of which 425 were postal votes.

In Kabisa-Talo constituency, DNT’s Tshencho Wangdi won 1,835 votes more than his opponent Kinley Wangchuk. Of the 4,294 votes Tshencho Wangdi secured, 1,392 were postal votes.

Kinley Wangchuk secured 1,781 EVM and 678 postal votes.

Tshencho Wangdi said the provisional result was bit of a surprise. “But, I am happy that my constituents find me capable and reliable to represent them.”

“I will try my best to live up to their expectations and fulfil the responsibility to represent my constituents to the best of my ability,” he added.

On poll day, the voters queued at Punakha hospital polling station as early as 7am, two hours before the poll began.

Deki, 50, from Guma gewog, was the first to vote at the Punakha hospital, the polling station with the highest number of voters in Punakha.

She said she started from home at the break of dawn because she wanted to vote early and go to attend a funeral of one of her relatives. “I am disturbed, but I came to vote because it is important and I feel that I can make a difference in choosing the right candidate for my constituency.”

Like Deki, Aum Namgay, 51, from Talo, also came early to the polling station. She was feeding her grandson whom she carried on her back outside the polling station.

“My daughter and son-in-law went to Australia for studies and there is no one to look after my grandson,” she said. “I came early because the polling station has a high number of voters and I want to vote early and go home. I don’t want to stand in a queue in the sun for long with my grandson.”

Voters at Dzomi gewog centre had to wait for about 20 minutes to resume voting after the EVM machine started giving some problem. About 119 voters voted at the polling station before the EVM had to be changed.

Punakha has 16,949 registered voters.

Dechen Tshomo | Punakha