KATHMANDU: Counting of votes polled in the high-stakes Nepal elections to elect a new parliament and provincial assemblies will begin from 9 pm on Sunday amid tight security, Chief Election Commissioner Dinesh Kumar Thapaliya said.
Millions of Nepalese began voting on Sunday hoping to end the political instability that has plagued the country for more than a decade and impeded growth.
After casting his vote for the House of Representatives and provincial assembly elections at Unique Nepal Academy in Bhaktapur, Thapaliya said the voting would close at 5 pm and all the ballot boxes would be collected at the vote count centres by 7 pm. "Then, we will need to hold a meeting among all the parties for around an hour, and we expect to begin the count by 9 pm," he was quoted as saying by the Nepalese media.
However, collecting ballot boxes in the mountainous districts would take time, hence the count there would begin on Monday tomorrow morning, he said. A total of 17,988,570 voters are eligible to vote in the election, for which 22,227 polling booths in 10,892 polling centres have been established.
Thapaliya said that the election commission was expecting a turnout of around 70 per cent this time.
Thapaliya said the commission would announce all the results of direct elections in the next eight days while those of proportional representation elections would be announced by December 8.