Heavy rain lashed many parts of Kerala and Maharashtra on Monday morning, disrupting the election process in both states, PTI reported. Voting is currently underway in 288 Assembly constituencies and one parliamentary constituency in Maharashtra. In Kerala, bye-elections to five Assembly seats are under way.
The India Meteorological Department issued an orange alert for 12 districts – Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam, Alappuzha, Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Idukki, Ernakulam, Thrissur, Palakkad, Malappuram, Kozhikode and Wayanad – on Monday.
“Stay weather aware,” Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s office said in a tweet. “Inclement weather is very likely across the state. Prepare for more downpours. Orange alerts have been issued for districts from Thiruvananthapuram to Wayanad. Kannur and Kasargod are under yellow alert.”
Polling stations in Ernakulam were submerged, according to some reports. Political parties in the state asked the Election Commission to delay the election. “We are closely monitoring the situation,” Kerala Chief Electoral Officer Tikaram Meena said. “In Ernakulam, at least 12 polling stations were shifted. All options are open.”
Many long-distance trains were stopped as the railway tracks were submerged because of the rain. Several districts have announced holidays for schools and colleges, and people living in low-lying regions were asked to move to safer locations.
As of 1 pm, Alappuzha seat was ahead with 45.2% polling, followed by Pathanamthitta (40.98%), Thiruvananthapuram (38.82%) and Kasargod (35.65%). Ernakulam, which faced the most rain, had a voter turnout of only 29.1%.
Areas in southern Konkan Maharashtra, Latur, Osmanabad and western and southern parts also faced some rain on Monday morning. Mumbai and its suburbs had overcast skies.
The India Meteorological Department predicted thunderstorms with lightning and winds at some places in Raigad, Ratnagiri, Sindhudurg, Pune, Kolhapur, Satara, Sangli, Solapur, Beed and Osmanabad districts.
In Maharashtra, the estimated voter turnout was 27.48% as of 1 pm.
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